[UK] Replacing Sky etc with ATV4 - suggestions?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Hermes Monster, Feb 27, 2016.

  1. Hermes Monster macrumors 6502a

    Hermes Monster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    So my Sky contract comes to an end in a few months and I'd really rather not renew. So...does anyone have any suggestions on how I can use the ATV4 to watch the popular US TV shows, movies and sports?

    Thoughts so far

    Now TV entertainment pass - 6 months for £30
    TV Player app for FTA channels
    Amazon prime - luckily I can get the student offer

    Not sure about how to get newer movies or sports though ... I suspect Kodi might be required? I've tried the Primewire add on for PLEX but I don't have my MacBook running all the time and it's just unreliable. I see lots of IPTV streaming apps, anyone use them?
     
  2. Richard28 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2016
    #2
    I've only got an ATV3 currently and have been thinking the same thing. I have the NOW TV movie pass which works much better than the SKY EPG which I loathe, but have not tried the entertainment pass yet.

    Have been thinking about dropping the Sky subscription too - the thing that stops me still is the lack of a recorder for the free to air channels and proper "planner" on the ATV to stack your shows no matter what the source.

    I've been thinking about getting a freesat box to replace the sky box which will give me this for the freeview channels and retains some HD content.. but does not quite give exactly what I need....
     
  3. Hermes Monster thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Hermes Monster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    I know what you mean, I was thinking I could rely on catch up or box sets instead of recording? I very rarely watch any live tv, spending more time flicking through the guide than watching the dross that's on.

    No solution seems to quite tick all the boxes yet.
     
  4. paulselby1 macrumors newbie

    paulselby1

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    #4
    Ive just cancelled sky tv, upgraded to their unlimited fibre and bought an ATV4. Sideloaded kodi for most of my streaming needs.
     
  5. Hermes Monster thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Hermes Monster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    I think I'll end up doing something similar, but with the £5pm Virgin 50mb fibre. I've also considered BT and their YouView box - 38mb, and BT Sports for £15pm (plus line rental of course)

    It's all very meh though :)
     
  6. northy124 macrumors 68020

    northy124

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2007
    #6
    ATV instead of Sky is pretty good, I use my US account and get all the TV I love for a lot less per year than I spent with Sky & Virgin. Like you said the downsides are no sports but you can get that through beIN Sports MENA for a lot less than Sky Sports cost per year.
     
  7. eyeballtickler7 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    #7
    Don't forget that NOW TV (owned by Sky) allow 24 hour, 7 day or monthly passes for Sky Sports.

    There is an app for Apple TV so you can watch any sport that is Sky Sports legally through your Apple TV. Yes, you're still giving the money to Sky, but at least you can pick to pay for the games you want rather than a whole month.
     
  8. KettyKrueger macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    After years of Sky, games consoles, speakers, amps, DVD/Blu-Ray players, streaming devices, wires. Wires. Wires. Wires. I've taken a very minimalist route.

    All I have now is TV, Apple TV 4 and a Sonos Playbar (no aerial for live tv). Apple TV is almost perfect for me. I use NowTV to get my fix of American TV shows (box sets and live TV, about £7 per month - cancel at any time), I occasionally subscribe to movies (about £8 per month). I also have Netflix. For those time when I want to watch something not on NowTV, I use TVPlayer app for BBC, ITV, Channel 4 etc.

    For those times when I want to own a movie, I buy it on iTunes. I'm fussy about music and still like to buy CDs so I have a Mac Mini 2010 for ripping CDs, general server duties and playing the odd DVD that I've borrowed.

    This suits me and the family fine. Kids don't drool in front of the TV for hours. if they want to watch a bit of TV, they go straight to Netflix and watch an actual programme, sans adverts. There's plenty for the wife and I watch in the evening.

    Was at work today and people were discussing their Sky TV bills. Absolutely obscene, ranging from £80 to £120. It's just not worth it....for me. I'd rather have slightly poorer quality and the ability to cancel anything when I want.
     
  9. Hermes Monster thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Hermes Monster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    Tell me more about this :) A US iTunes account do you mean? Are you then using a VPN to subscribe to US channels/apps?
    --- Post Merged, Feb 29, 2016 ---
    Sounds like you're living my dream here, with a solid set up that I was considering. I was however hoping for something from left field that I wasn't aware of, but I don't think it exists :(



    On a slightly related note, I have today discovered the Infuse app and the fact that I can plug a External HD/USB stick with movies and TV on it into my Airport Time Capsule and watch them on AT4 with the Infuse app, flawlessly - I'm very impressed by it
     
  10. northy124 macrumors 68020

    northy124

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2007
    #10
    Well yes, I have a US iTunes account which I use for Season Passes for the shows I watch, many of which are either delayed or not airing in the UK, it works out cheaper than Sky and all their nonsense. I also subscribe to BeIN Sports which requires a VPN, I do also have access to Sling (not through ATV), HBO Now and Showtime Anytime which is quite good.
     
  11. afd macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    Scotland
    #11
    Would love to cancel sky but not sure the rest of family would let me. Currently have Sky without films and sport, nobody watches sport and anytime we get films we are bored with it after a month or so. We also use Netflix, I have a NAS with DVD rips that we now use Infuse to watch on, and also still have an EyeTV on my iMac that is useful for recording off of FreeView. The TV player app is useful but looks a bit fuzzy, I'd eventually like to buy a HDHomeRun and use that with the Channels app.
     
  12. Hermes Monster thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Hermes Monster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    This all sounds excellent... may I push for specifics as I'm a not all the familiar with VPN outside of using one on my MBA or iPhone .. so can you set your router so that only your ATV uses the VPN? And then presumably switch to your US account when you want to view US content?

    Thanks in advance

    Also, there's a Sling app in the works :)
    --- Post Merged, Mar 3, 2016 ---
    I've been reading about HDHomeRun thing and the EyeTV ... I think annoyingly though, the ATV isn't quite going to cut it for us is it? There's just too many options and providers.

    What I've done this week is ...

    - discovered that I can plug an external HDD into my Airport Time Capsule and essentially create a NAS drive for much less than a NAS (or rather much less than buying one now 'cos the ATC was frickin expensive)
    - subscribed to showRSS to pull down my favourite shows
    - set up an automator script to transfer any new downloads in the Download folder to the HDD in my ATC
    - use infuse to watch the content (which is an excellent app, I don't even need to organise the files, it does it for me)
     
  13. BMox macrumors 6502

    BMox

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2014
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #13
    Will the Channels app even work with the likes of Virgin/Sky?
     
  14. afd macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    Scotland
    #14
    No, it only works in UK with the FreeView version of HDHomerun, at the moment only for viewing channels no recording. You could record with a computer connected to it on same network though.
     
  15. NeilHD macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2014
    #15
    I recently ditched my Virgin TV as I got fed up with constant price rises. Well, I nearly ditched it. I did have a Tivo downstairs and a V+ box upstairs. When I called to cancel the TV they said I could keep the Tivo for £2/month, on the basic (i.e, Freeview) package. So I did that. Now I have:

    Downstairs:
    Panasonic Freeview HD recorder box (barely been used since I bought it on clearance from Richer Sounds after the ditch).
    ATV 3

    Upstairs:
    Tivo
    ATV 4

    Both the ATVs have Netflix and Now TV (Entertainment and Movies). IPlayer is on the ATV 4. I've not needed it downstairs yet, but I think I can use IPlayer on my Blu Ray. Amazon Prime can be streamed from my phone (downstairs) or via the Blu Ray player (upstairs).

    So far, I've not missed anything (apart from a few HD channels I can only now get in SD), but I am saving about £40/month.
     
  16. profmatt macrumors 65816

    profmatt

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2015
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    I ditched Sky last year because I didn't like the EPG and there were way too many channels.

    I use my Amazon Fire TV more than anything else: mostly BBC iPlayer, but also Amazon Prime stuff, of which there's lots, much of it good.

    I have an ATV4. I'm frankly disappointed with it. I don't like iPlayer on it. I use it for NowTV, which I thought would be dream-scenario as those are the only Sky channels I ever cared about, but the app is awful to use.

    I thought I'd save money but I almost certainly haven't. I shelled out loads on iTunes TV programmes and movies, plus the cost of the Fire TV and ATV, and NowTV subscriptions. Oh, and Netflix (which is equally good on either box.)

    I've flirted with the idea of getting Sky Q, except it's criminally over-priced and you have to have Sky Broadband.
     
  17. afd macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    Scotland
    #17
    Just downloaded Synology's DS Video app and watched a DVD rip. All worked very well. Apparently I can plug a USB TV dongle into Synology drive and watch and record FreeView. I'll need to source a cheap compatible device.
     

Share This Page