Review: Sky+HD with Anytime+
Sky+ is an easy to grasp, user friendly recorder that can also be set remotely using mobiles or on-line. The new Anytime+ on-demand system is integrated effectively into the existing menus. It has a wide and expanding range of programmes from Sky’s library to download for no extra charge (except the newest films).
The Anytime+ VoD service requires Sky broadband which won't suit all potential subscribers
The on-demand viewing isn’t quite instant but playback can be started after about a minute. Currently the VoD is only standard definition, looking slightly more compressed than SD broadcasts but cleaner than BT Vision’s streaming versions. There are Box Office movies via satellite in HD but they are pay-per-view, not instantly on demand and don’t include HD TV shows.
At the moment Anytime+ is only available to Sky customers who also take its broadband service (and not everyone does).
The EPG and recording management are less clever than TiVo, particularly for finding new episodes when a series moves channel or has been off-air for a while. Indeed, it was no exaggeration when Reg Hardware reader Wondermouse commented that Sky+ was “like a TiVo with a lobotomy”. Sky’s Never Miss is a web tool that tries to plug this gap.
Sky+ also has a reputation for niggling bugs. Software updates may cause new problems and existing glitches can go unsolved for ages. Quality and stability varies between Sky+ models – even within the HD range there are numerous iterations – and not all are Anytime+ compatible but the newest ones are clearly better.
Reg Rating 75%
Initial Price Free (subject to conditions)
Monthly subscriptions From £19.50
More Info Sky
Next page: Review: Virgin Media V+HD
About as close as you can get..
would most likely be the PS3.
Freeview Inc PVR (PlayTV)
PSN Video Store
Not bad for 1 box that's £180.
"unfrorgiveably unusably awful crap boxes from Virgin"??
Think you're a bit out of date - the Samsung V+HD box I've got is works fine and I personally think is better than Sky's offering.. I am considering upgrading to the Tivo though as it has more storage space and more than a weeks tv guide (the only 2 things I find a pain sometimes)..
For an answer to your question
I used to have Virgin...
But then I had 4 outages, lasting 5-8 days each, in the space of one month, I was left without television from 20th December until 6th January, no refund, even after a letter to the boss, so I cancelled my subscription, and have been telly-less for two years, and I love it. Okay, I have reasonable broadband, so there is iPlayer and other services, but I
Like everything else with Virgin, when it works it's very very good, but when it's bad, it's horrid.
"The UI is maybe a bit slow ( but not as much as you say)"
Yes, yes it is as slow as I say. I know because I spent a frustrating time trying to set up recording for WSB by searching for "motorsport" under the "TV Channels"
"You can't watch LiveTV while searching OnDemand (Probably a marketing decision rather than a technical one)"
Yes, I know this and I really don't care why it is that way; it's a PITA and affects my experience as a user.
"You can't hide Unsubscribed channels - So what? If you're on the V+ package you probably have XL anyway."
I can't view them and I don't want to have them cluttering up the guide, that's why.
"Why would you need to use Ethernet and USB? The software has no function for that - the recordings are encrypted for a reason."
You assumed I want to lift media off the V+ box and you assume wrong. I want to view media I already have on my network. The V+ box is running on a Linux distro, including "smbfs" would have been a snap.
"Have you heard of a Wireless Router? Never trust bundled routers."
I'll agree on that, I'm using the bundled one at the moment but considering buying another one and chucking DD-WRT on it.
Most of the above will be moot once I get around to setting up Myth with Freesat. The V+ box will either be returned or can just gather dust.