Watch television with Windows 8's Live TV application

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 23, 2012
Apps, Software, tv, Windows software

Live TV is without doubt one of the cooler applications that has been released for Windows 8 up until now. It provides direct access to a mixture of traditional TV channels from the UK, Germany, Italy, France and a couple of other countries, plus a selection of custom channels that cater to specific audiences.

When you first start the program you see a list of UK TV channels right away. Here you get access to channels such as BBC One and BBC Two, ITV 1 to 4, or Channel 4 which you can watch even if you are not connecting from the UK. When you scroll to the right you will  notice that the list of available channels does not end here. The next section is called Premium, and while that may be an indication that you have to pay to watch, this is apparently not the case, at least not during tests.

The description seems to indicate that SD streams are free, while HD streams cost a subscription fee.

Television on FilmOn enables you to watch live TV for free in Standard Definition on your computer or mobile device. If you wish to watch in HD and record your favorite shows or series, you can do so for a small fee. You can watch your local channels or select from our huge line-up of channels from the US, Europe, Latin America and Asia. Watch live Sports, News, Lifestyle, Movies,

Premium channels are themed channels that provide you with 24/7 channels about martial arts, sports in general, lifestyle and so on.  German, French, Arabic and Italian channels follow with stations such as Rai 1 to 3, RTL or TV5 Monde available for selection.

watch tv pc

What follows are additional groups like sports, lifestyle or movies that provide access to a versatile TV program. The sports group offers for instance an UFC channel that is streaming Ultimate Fighting Championship fights and news around the clock, while the movies group offers a classic Western and Sci-Fi channel. All channels that I have tested worked during tests. While i can't guarantee that it will work for the country you are connecting from, it is likely that it will.

A click on Live TV at the top and the selection of subscriptions displays subscription prices for EU channels per year and month, and for the Premium channels for a year and month. Additional subscriptions are available for DVS subscriptions which seem to allow you to record TV shows using the service. What this likely means is that you do can use the service a limited time for free after which at least some of the channels will only be available with a subscription.

The actual TV streams are not in full screen by default, but larger than your standard YouTube video resolution. You get options to play the channel in fullscreen and switch from HD to SD streaming which may be important if your Internet connection is not reliable or fast enough for HD.

What I like about the display here is that a TV guide is displayed right next to the TV stream so that you can easily check what's coming up next on the station.

An option to browser a TV guide for all stations is unfortunately missing right now which would be a great addition to the application.

Live TV all in all is a great application for Windows 8 if it does not turn into a pay to watch TV app after a certain amount of watching or time.


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  1. Gonzo said on November 25, 2012 at 2:39 am

    It’s basically a FilmOn app. No need for Win 8 or Metro. Simply open a web browser and point it to their website to enjoy the exact same features.

  2. hal9000 said on November 24, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    I use the filmontv app for android and i works very well. Once i found this in the windows store (still no search) i have to say that it is a very well made app, but cos it is in the stupid metro ui i will probably still use tv catchup when part watching / listening and working on other windows (metro doesn’t do this well)

    1. Bill Reilly said on November 24, 2012 at 8:11 pm

      There is search in the Windows Store app… Just pull out the charms bar and search… It’s quite simple, really…

  3. Ross said on November 24, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I couldn’t get any channels at all (fronm New Zealnd), so I changed to DNS servers149.154.158.186 &
    Now I see UK, US and other channels.

    Next job, working out how to record them!

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 24, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      So they are restricting channels depending on the country you are connecting from, interesting. Those DNS servers, which company provides them?

  4. Rick said on November 24, 2012 at 7:38 am

    I just tried it out,
    Loads of channels.. to bad there aint any i would watch :(.

    But really amazing amounth :| loads of country’s some hd most sd but still nice list :D.

  5. creamshaw said on November 24, 2012 at 1:44 am
    Reply is the ultimate solution for uk tv watchers, it works perfectly in the IE10 metro browser once you perform the flash hack.

  6. lainiwaku said on November 23, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    if i am on internet it’s because i don’t like tv . . . i don’t want tv apps ^^

  7. JohnMWhite said on November 23, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    The UK TV channels seem to be completely missing when I tested it from the US. There were no US channels either, or really any channels I recognise other than Al Jazeera and France 24.

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