Moving broadband + tv provider (advice please)

So looking for an alternative to Sky.

  1. I have multi-room giving me tv service in several rooms.

  2. I have two sets with free-view (not connected) and one without.

  3. I want to replicate multi-room if possible.

It’s been 21 years, so I’m rusty……

All advice gratefully received.


Do you need paid TV or would Freesat do? Or even buying an Apple TV/Roku box for each TV and streaming everything?


Happy to rein in the number of channels - I know I have freeview on board but I’ve no arial right now.

Not familiar with the Roku box (is that a freeview alternative?). Not overly struck on Apple TV.

Roku is basically a brand of streaming box that you can install most (all?) of the common streaming apps on. Cheaper than Apple TV boxes.

Basically rather than paying to get somebody to install an aerial you’d just buy a Roku box for each TV and use the BBC/ITV/4/5/UKTV apps to stream the live channels if you wanted to watch those, or just use the on-demand content.

You’d also be able to put Netflix, NOW TV (for Sky channels), Disney+, etc on there.

The reason I mentioned Apple TV is that there is an app for it called TV Launcher which basically gives you a TV guide which shows you the listings of the live channels and will then launch you in to the right app when you select one (eg. if you selected BBC 2 it would open the iPlayer app and open BBC 2). I’m not aware of something similar for Roku.

I got rid of Sky about a year ago and just stream everything on an Apple TV box now - works pretty well.

Have you had Sky+ or Sky Q? If the former then you should already have cables from the satellite to each TV so Freesat boxes might be worth a look. If Sky Q then you might only have satellite cables to one of the TVs.



Can be quite the lifestyle change when you’ve had traditional TV your whole life. But the interface makes a huge different, and Apple TV is the best there is IMO.

Just get the streaming apps you want. Watch what you want when you want.

And if you don’t bother with BBC or watch any of the channel live streams , you can ditch the tv licence too, and save on that.

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I have Sky Q. I’m assuming the Sky equipment will all be redundant. Does that mean the various streaming solutions use the broadband connection for service?

Looks like the Apple TV box is a candidate then. It’s more than a route to Apple TV schedules by the sound of it?

(Sorry - a bit short on savvy because of the prolonged Sky experience).

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Ah yeah from memory you’re only actually renting the Sky Q box off Sky so they will want all their kit back.

All of the streaming boxes will use broadband, yeah. If you go for Apple TV you can install any of the streaming apps on there, and you don’t need to subscribe to Apple TV+ at all if you don’t want to.

The other alternatives will be:

Freeview - you’d need to get somebody to install an aerial and cabling to each TV and buy a Freeview STB for the TV that doesn’t have it built-in. You can pick one up from Currys.

Freesat - You’d need to get somebody to install a new LNB on your dish and install cabling to the TVs that don’t have it, and then buy a Freesat box for each TV.

Virgin Media - This one would probably be most like Sky and they will come and install it for you. Obviously you’ll need to be in a VM area.


Really helpful, @Wilt , thankyou. This all looks to be a simpler transition than I thought. :blush:


Yep, streaming services use your broadband connection, so you don’t need to worry about things like aerials or satellite.

Apple’s TV does a really good job of bringing them all (except Netflix) together in a single interface. If you’ve ever used Sky’s on demand services, it’s a bit like that but with a much better interface.

And for live tv there’s the launcher app @Wilt recommended, so it’s a solid all round option.

You won’t quite get everything Freeview has to offer, but you’ll still get Sky’s channels through Now TV when you want them, all the big 5 channels are there.

And then you also have this which is coming relatively soon:

The switch from traditional to streaming TV, particularly if it involves moving largely from watching live tv to watching on demand can be a big change though. It won’t be for everyone, but it’s certainly worth trying.

The amount of streaming apps now do kinda make me long for the good old days of Sky at times, but Sky now isn’t like it was in the good old days. Because a lot of the content you used to pay Sky for isn’t there anymore, because it’s moved to one of the streaming apps.


When I decided to ditch Sky in favour of streaming this is what I was most apprehensive about.

It was definitely quite a big change but it did surprise me how quickly my viewing habits changed from live-tv centric to watching most of my stuff on demand. I only go to live TV for a select few things like sports now.


Other popular options include using a Amazon Fire TV Stick and/or a Chromecast with Google TV for streaming TV.


Yes indeed, I picked up one of these recently. A very useful addition. :relieved:


I’ve been contemplating getting rid of Sky Q for some time, too. I’ve only the one TV so could just use Freesat as a replacement (and the latest boxes work with a Sky Q wideband LNB).

Still in contract with Sky until November, though, so plenty of time to prepare.

Thanks for mentioning the TV launcher app, @Wilt - I wasn’t aware of this.


My contract ends in October, but I enquired about early termination charges. I was advised that leaving them would incur a fee equal to one-and-a-half months subscription.

That’s a very pleasant surprise - and makes leaving Sky sooner rather than later a very straightforward decision.

Does this mean I can still make use of the soon to be redundant dish? :thinking:

Should be able to, yes. They won’t want the dish back, especially now that they are winding down installs.

I can see I’ll be revisiting this thread as the days go by……:relieved:.

Meanwhile, I’ll be ringing Sky (and me, a VIP, too :grin:).


Just chiming in that my nan very much adores her Roku, but that’s 99% fuelled by the channel being on it

I ditched Sky a couple of years ago.

I too have no digital aerial.

I have Amazon Fire Sticks in my TVs and stream everything off apps.

Means my BBC feed is about 90s behind Freeview feed, but that’s only a problem when people text to comment on a goal that hasn’t happened yet on my TV :man_shrugging::rofl:

My broadband is with Virgin Media as best offer available at time Plusnet contract expired (December).


Another :+1: for AppleTV here. Quality of programming is 1st class. R-


Not sure if it will work with the newer Sky boxes, but we were able to just cancel Sky and continue to use the box to get the FreeSat channels. The only thing that changed was that we couldn’t record programmes anymore.

We’ve since changed over to an actual FreeSat box but same cables.

Also have a NowTV stick (Roku based) but you can’t get those anymore.