Posted 9:01am

PlayTV Is Set To Get Even Better

Hi guys, you may have heard in Andy House’s speech at gamescom that PlayTV is set for some pretty interesting extra features before the end of this year, so just wanted to run you through the new features with you on here. Although I’m in Cologne giving demos of PlayTV, I’ll do my best to answer any questions you have.

PLAYTV-Live-Chat

Just in case you haven’t heard much about this great gadget for your PS3, here’s a really quick look at the basics.

  • PlayTV is the little black box that lets you watch, pause and record free-to-air digital TV on your PS3.
  • Pause, rewind and record Live TV, watch one channel while you record another and even record programmes while playing games.
  • PlayTV features an easy to use programme guide to help you easily plan your viewing.
  • If you have a PSP, VAIO laptop or Sony Ericsson AINO phone, you can take all these great features with you, wherever you go. Remote Play enables you to watch live television in superb quality, access previously recorded programmes and organise your media library anywhere in the world. All you need is a wireless Internet connection.
  • PlayTV also lets you upscale your Standard Definition TV programmes.

Now, check out the new features that will be coming to all current and new PlayTV owners, later in the year.

  • Play TV is going to become an interactive experience with the great new ‘Chat TV’ feature. Text chat with friends and other PlayStation Network users while watching live TV, and without interrupting your viewing. This feature is a great way of interacting with friends while you watch TV, and especially great during the football as you can banter with your mates without taking your eyes off the action.

ChatTV 01lite

  • The next new feature for PlayTV is a new premium programme guide (from ‘tvtv’) that lets you Plan your TV viewing 7 days in advance. You can also find tonnes of information on programmes and movies, as well as discovering new things to watch by searching TV listings by genre, actors, directors, producers and more. (standard PlayTV programme guide in Australia)
  • You will also be glad to hear that PlayTV will be getting the much awaited feature in the UK, Series Link. Never miss an episode of your favourite series again. (Only available in the UK)
  • Following on from the community theme of the new PlayTV features, you will be able to send recommendations for your favourite shows to your Facebook wall and also any of your PSN friends. People will be able to comment on your Facebook recommendations or even set a recording for the show directly from the PSN recommendation.
  • The final new feature coming to PlayTV is designed to give you some added inspiration with ‘Community Favourites’. This feature lets you see what your friends and the PSN Community are watching and enjoying. So if you’re ever stuck for something to watch then just check out what everyone else is watching. (Not available in Australia)

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Comments

139 Comments 31 Author replies
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So theres no set date for the update? Thank you.

Can’t wait, love my PlayTV and this will make it even better. Looking forward to a Freeview HD compatible one aswell

 

What about Greece? please!!!!

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:05 pm    

    Hi, we are constantly evaluating country expansion plans and as soon as I have anymore info on this I will let you know

Awww man. To get this with the ability to see encrypted channels as well (and in Norway of course).. would be bliss..

A man can dream..

 
hollandnigel 20 August, 2010 @ 10:08 am   5

So it’s only a firmware update? Nothing new hardware wise?

A DVB-S2 Freesat version would be great!

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:06 pm    

    Hi, no hardware update just yet, this is a software update that you will be able to download from PS Store

 
nobodygaming 20 August, 2010 @ 10:12 am   6

I shouldn’t be too surprised to see limitations to Australian users, Freeview has always raped our virtual rear ends.

Of course I trust you guys won’t dare remove the ‘other’ country choice from the settings, since its the only way I can ad skip and export my recordings to my computer/phone. If I have to be stuck with Freeview I may just get more fun by burning my play tv box outside (and possibly recording it for youtube purposes)

 

I don’t expect it anytime soon in the netherlands :(

 

Awesome when will play tv be available for the Netherlands..??

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:08 pm    

    Hi, in the Netherlands most of the channels are delivered via DVB-C and PlayTV is currently supporting DVB-T

 
DiscoMcDisco 20 August, 2010 @ 10:16 am   9

You won’t get DVB-t2 anytime soon :(

And the poor Oz lot… such a [DELETED] (though they do already get HD… /shakey fist) …

Glad series link is in here now… means i can set conflicting shows i wana record when on SKY on the PS3 and just let them run.. brilliant news.. record 4 things at once and watch one.. Chuffed doesn’t cover it.

I *can* disable all these features, can’t I? Don’t really want my friends to know I’m watching a re-run of Bergerac while I could be watching Babestation.

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:11 pm    

    Hi, yes, of course, you can set the PSN presence to ‘off’ and you won’t share any of your TV information with other PSN users, when you get the software update you will need to go through the set up for the new features and you just set this preference to ‘no’. If you change your mind later, just go to the settings menu

 
Munkeh111 20 August, 2010 @ 10:24 am   11

Well, I assume no HD in the UK is a hardware issue, but it does give me the one feature I need, series link!!!

Having said that… is there a way of recording a few extra minutes either side of the programme, because I quite often get the start and end of programmes cut off

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:17 pm    

    Hi, you can already add 1 – 10mins to any recording with the current PlayTV and with the new update you will be able to add 15, 20 and 30 minutes to the start and end of recordings. This will also work with series link in the UK and you can either do this each time you record or set a default for all recordings of however many minutes you want in the settings menu

FishFingers 20 August, 2010 @ 10:36 am   12

tvtv offers a ‘remote record’ feature which allows programmes to be scheduled for recording on the device through their website. Will this be possible in the new version of PlayTV?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:19 pm    

    Hi, this functionality is currently not part of the update but if you access PlayTV via remote play on your PSP, VAIO or AINO phone, you can remotely set recording like this

 
noruraeus 20 August, 2010 @ 10:40 am   13

Good to see the series link addition, more flexibility in series recording has been my main issue with the PlayTV software, especially that there isn’t an option to record just on weekdays. Also hope an updated PlayTV hardware box will come out next year with DVB-T2 support :)

Apart from that I do think the PlayTV software is the best Tuner/PVR software I tried, most set-top box software for instance tends to be utter rubbish. Used to have a Virgin Media box, and it was a 2 seconds wait for each time I pressed a button in the menus.

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:20 pm    

    Hi, thanks for the comments, glad your loving PlayTV and hopefully this update will make it even better for you. I will keep you up to date on any other developments

 
mcwildcard 20 August, 2010 @ 10:41 am   14

An awful lot of people we’re expecting ‘Play TV 2′ to be a new version with DVB-T2 hardware, I’m very disappointed that this isn’t the case.
As much as I love using my PS3 for a catch-all media hub, I’m going to now have to look at ditching it and grabbing a set top box that’s capable of Freeview HD.
Considering you guys are based in the UK, it seems odd that you aren’t going to make to extra effort for your compatriots.
If a DVB-T2 version of Play TV were released, I’d snap it up, no question, but until that happens I’m going to have to start looking elsewhere.

Is there any talk at all of a DVB-T2 version?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:22 pm    

    Hi, I totally understand your point here and we are looking into the possibility of a DVB-T2 tuner for the future. As soon as I hear anything on this I will let you know

 
sweetasman01 20 August, 2010 @ 10:41 am   15

When the is this going to launch in New Zealand?!!!!!! I bought my one in Australia and it works fine in New Zealand the only problem is that the guide only goes two shows out. How about you stop adding crap no one wants (chatting to friends via text) and release the dam thing in other countries. We were supposed to be one of the first to get it.

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:24 pm    

    Hi, we are on the case but I’m afraid right now I can’t give you a definite answer. Will let you know ASAP

 
SlipperyFella 20 August, 2010 @ 10:44 am   16

And if your friends are watching One Tree Hill, you know exactly what shows to AVOID :)

 

It would be really nice to have this in Sweden…

 
VictorAnalogy 20 August, 2010 @ 10:53 am   18

@mcwildcard: Totally agree. This needs to be compatible with UK Freeview HD or I’m not getting one.

Cool! But unfortunately The Netherlands has only a few ‘free-to-air’ TV channels so we can’t do very much with PlayTV. Am I right?

 
Splutterbug 20 August, 2010 @ 10:54 am   20

You could sell a huge amount of these if you released an HD version, anything without Freeview HD at the moment is old technology and wasted money.

 
YobRenoops 20 August, 2010 @ 10:55 am   21

When oh when will you be releasing a Freeview HD version??!

Are the VAIO laptops that support “Remote Play” available in the UK yet?

The Sony Centre in the Bluewater Shopping Centre in Kent just keep saying “…a new range will be here in a few weeks”.

The Sony web site is less than helpful too:

[ http://www.sony.co.uk/hub/vaio-playstation-3/remote-play ]

“* Compatible VAIO models are new models released from May 2010 (Windows 7)” – apparently.

(My VGN-AR51SU that has always been used on an AC/DC power supply is reporting “No battery is detected” & the surface to rest my wrists whilst typing is becoming too hot to touch during normal usage. I am keen to buy a new laptop… I just hope the new VAIO models with “Remote Play” support are available before I purchase elsewhere)

BFN,

fp.

    James Thorpe 27 August, 2010 @ 11:20 am    

    Hi, The compatible VAIO models are the ones launched on the market from May 2010 (except Windows 7 Pro models)

    You can also see the information if you look at the specific model descriptions. The remote keyboard and remote play features will be listed under ‘Sony Tools’ in the ‘Software’ section of the description – e.g.
    http://www.sony.co.uk/product/vn-f-series/vpcf12s1e-b
    Remote Keyboard and Remote Play functionalities are mentioned under “Sony Tools”
    Hope that helps

 
Scubafinch 20 August, 2010 @ 11:04 am   23

Pretty disappointed that AU is not getting series-link. Community features are nice-to-haves, series-link should be standard for any half decent PVR.

Is this a problem with the EPG here in Australia? I’m not sure if the one we see is supplied by PlayTV or from Freeview (same name as UK – confusing huh?). The Freeview EPG supports series-link… checkout their website. PlayTV is a Freeview compliant device which is why we cannot export content to the XMB or one minute skip. So we lose features but don’t gain any, what gives?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:36 pm    

    Hi, we are defo looking into series link for Aus in the future as we understand that this is an important feature for you guys.

quarkquest 20 August, 2010 @ 11:05 am   24

Dear Sony, Can you please try to understand that RemotePlay being exclusive to Vaio Laptops wouldn’t increase the sale of Vaio Laptops. But, one thing for sure you are pissing off all others who don’t have Vaio Laptops, and wants to enjoy Remoteplay on their non Vaio Laptops. But, one thing is clear, you are missing a hell of opportunity of zero investment advertisement of your amazing RemotePlay by showing off to others – how cool it would be when I could show RemotePlay and watching PlayTV on my non Vaio Laptop to my friends and colleagues and inspire them. I bet many people will just go and by PS3 right way…Please think Sony think!!!

Greece?! lol! Greece is almost nonexistent for Sony!

fyi ,playtv is working fine with DIGEA.

 
Shadowdragoon 20 August, 2010 @ 11:24 am   26

And when is the Scandinavian release for this?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:39 pm    

    Hi, we are looking into a scandinavian release but the problem is that there are very few free-to-air channels broadcast over DVBT

 

Are these the only features in this version? What happens with those of us not interested in Chat features? Has channel sorting being finally added? Enhancements to HD playback?

Is this going to be a free or fee upgrade?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:45 pm    

    Hi, the development guys are constantly working hard to add as many new features as possible that have been requested across all markets. The new features in this update represent PlayStation’s strong community commitment. You will be able to get the software update on PS Store at a reasonble price. A lot of effort went into developing these features and they will make PlayTV a very unique product.

 

Awesome features! I luv the idea of the whole social thing. But first things first, now that tvtv is a feature I really hope NZ will finally get an official release! Since that should solve the MHEG EPG issue we have here.

 
Carnivius_Prime 20 August, 2010 @ 11:43 am   29

I love my PlayTV and now I recently finally bought the PS3′s remote control it feels even better but to be honest none of these new features interests me. Getting tired of all this ‘social’ stuff. When I watch TV I just want to be focused on the programme itself. It’s why I turned off the notifications on my PS3 for when I get a message or someone on my friends list logs on.

What I would really like include these:

Holding down a button on the remote control automatically boots up PlayTV when PS3 is on standby so if I’m using the remote it’s clear I want to go straight into watching TV.

And why, oh why can’t I download anything while watching PlayTV? Downloading huge games takes so much time that I neeeed to be able to do something else while I wait and yet loading up PlayTV seems to pause all downloading. I don’t even get why.

Channel order sorting. Getting a bit tiresome not having the channels arranged the way that’s most comfortable for my viewing. Seems like such a basic feature but very useful.

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:47 pm    

    Hi, thanks for the suggestions, I will pass them onto Cambridge Studios, thanks

Unfortunately PlayTV is useless is most countries other then the UK :(

 

Nice and welcome additions, especially Series Link, but seriously, no mention of a Freeview HD version? I’m going to want to watch FHD soon, and if I can’t watch it through my (HD) PS3 console (which already uses PlayTV) then I’ll have to abandon it as a TV viewer and go for a dedicated machine. Not something I want to do because PlayTV has been the best Freeview box I’ve seen yet. :( Sort it out Sony…

Harlequiine 20 August, 2010 @ 12:03 pm   32

“PlayTV Is Set To Get Even Better… except in Australia”

Seriously, it sucks to be a gamer in Australia. Our prices are expensive, no special services work, our internet is slow & pricey compared to other countries and our gaming industry is nearing death.

I’m complaining, yes, but I shouldn’t be since other countries have it much worse off.. drives me nuts though!

 

Yay Series Link.

Thanks for keeping playTV up to date guys, keep up the hard work!

Quick question, if you are now using tvtv does that mean that we wont get updates in real time, eg if a program is running late at the moment the guide updates to show you the change?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:50 pm    

    Hi, thanks for the comments. You will still be able to get updates in real time with the new programme guide

 

no hd?
no interest from me.
the freeview hd specs have been finalised, there are boxes in the shops now, why are you not doing a hd version of playtv?

scorpiworld 20 August, 2010 @ 12:16 pm   35

Sounds great but… when will the issues with New Zealand get sorted and either of the versions be available?

 
nickjd331 20 August, 2010 @ 12:20 pm   36

Series Link sounds great, I can’t wait.

Also while i’m here, there are some really simple improvements I would like to do with repeat recordings.

1-You can choose daily or weekly, I could really do with weekdays. (At the moment I waste tons of space when I forget to delete the empty weekend programs.)

2-You can choose 2-25 repeats, I would like infinite/never ending repeats. (At the moment if I forget to keep increasing the number every 25 days, then I miss programs.

Both of these are very easy to do, so it would be nice to have them added in this update.

Other than that, playTV is great, it has completely replaced my dedicated DVD/HDD recorder.

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:52 pm    

    Hi, Thanks for all your comments. It’s not going to be possible to get them in this update but I will make sure I pass them on and hopefully they can be added to the next update ASAP

One thing I’ve been wondering about with regards to Playstation TV:

When I bought a DVB-T tuner in Switzerland and brought it home to Norway, it didn’t work. I contacted the broadcasting service, and they made me feel almost stupid for expecting that a tuner bought abroad would work. Only a selected few tuners works in Norway I was told, and they listed them.

My question then becomes, how does Playstation TV fit into this mess? If I buy it here in Switzerland (I live here currently on a definite contract), will it work when I come back to Norway?

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 12:55 pm    

    Hi, sorry for bad news but PlayTV isn’t currently supported in those 2 countries. We therefore can’t gurantee that PlayTV would work in either of them. In Norway and Switzerland DVB-T broadcasting is very limited i’m afraid

 

Not one reply.. so so sad..

 
greyness123 20 August, 2010 @ 12:43 pm   39

No hd = no buy . Just judging how slow you guys are on the uptake with hd it doesn’t look good for me buying into 3d ever now as it will probs lack loads of stuff for years .

@Munkeh111

You can already do it when you set the program to record. You can set it to start early and end later to avoid it :)

Some interesting features. Not sure how many will be used but still, nice to see it hasn’t been abandoned :)

Huggles
Vhari x

TO JAMES:

Quoted from a webSite “On the negative side the new and much discussed play tv live chat feature is a PREMIUM service, thats right, if you want access to in show chat and access to the most watched / most recorded and recommended recordings then you are going to have to pay for it, there are no plans to include it in the current psn+ subscription so its a second sub required to use its features.”

If this isn’t included in PS+ i will do what i can to stop people buying this, my mates on about getting it and i’ll tell him straight. Dont bother you gotta pay to watch stuff. (Even though i know you dont, i’ll tell him).

    James Thorpe 23 August, 2010 @ 1:01 pm    

    Hi, the guys at Cambridge put a great deal of effort into this update and, unlike the previous free updates, we will be charging a reasonable amout for the new features.
    Plus members are very important to us and we are looking into providing you guys extra value for PlayTV. Will keep you posted on this.
    PlayTV Live Chat is an adition to an already great product. If you are not keen on the new features then you do not have to buy the update, therfore there is no reason not to recommend this to your friend, we are NOT charging people to watch TV (as you said)

 
jfsebastian 20 August, 2010 @ 12:55 pm   42

Series Link is certainly a much needed feature so Kudos for adding it to the next update. The only thing missing now is the ability to record two channels at once. That would put PlayTV on a par with most other PVRs. Without it you can’t really rely on PlayTV as your sole recording device.

 
Alexsutton 20 August, 2010 @ 1:21 pm   43

Series Link is the only plus point about this update. Provided everything else can be disabled I won’t be too fussed. If this new ‘premium’ programme guide isn’t optional however I won’t be at all impressed.

 
BeAkErOo 20 August, 2010 @ 1:27 pm   44

Australians get stiffed again with this. I love my PlayTV but hate that I have to change to other region just to take stuff off my PS3 HDD when it is full in order to move it to an external HDD. Also why the hell can’t we get series link?

 
ArturNOW 20 August, 2010 @ 1:37 pm   45

When PlayTV will be available in Poland?

 
Skydancerx 20 August, 2010 @ 1:48 pm   46

Please bing PlayTV for DVB-S! Cause the DVB-T Infrastructure in Germany is horrible.

alkyonides 20 August, 2010 @ 1:54 pm   47

Dear developers, quit linking everything with fb/twitter, spend your time on useful features people want…. like a HD compatible version.

dutchguy1982 20 August, 2010 @ 2:04 pm   48

PlayTV and movies in de PSN store in Holland PLEASE!!!

 
greyness123 20 August, 2010 @ 2:56 pm   49

has no1 told sony this is 2010 and not the 90s , why are they using text chat during play tv when sky on 360 uses voice chat

 
TheMaxDaddy 20 August, 2010 @ 3:15 pm   50

Ireland hasn’t got any digital freeview yet. As far as I know. I heard there were trials in some cities, but I thought the provider went bankrupt or something.
Anybody use this in the Republic of Ireland?
I’ve heard you can get a bit of British freeview if you’re in the right place (east coast near Wales and some parts of Donegal). I live in Letterkenny and can’t get British Freeview (but can get british terestrial) as my ariel is pointing at the wrong transmitter.

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