Budget conscious UK ISP TalkTalk has today finally made their new Netgem powered pay TV (IPTV) platform and “TV 4K Box” device available to both new and existing customers on their fibre broadband plans (FTTC and FTTP). On top of that, the provider also claims to be the “first ISP in Europe” to launch TikTok on a TV set-top-box.
Last year we reported that the provider had adopted Netgem’s new managed “Content as a Service” platform, which can operate across a wider range of devices. But they’re also harnessing the same set-top-box kit as Netgem’s other UK partner ISPs (here). The first customer “tests” of all this began soon after, albeit initially only with customers on their full fibre packages (here).
The good news is that the new service has today gone live and it costs an additional £4 per month to take (i.e. the same as their old service). Customers can access more than 70 TV channels and on-demand players through the Netgem TV interface, which also supports 30 apps (e.g. Netflix, Amazon (Prime Video) and YouTube – all in 4K) and that now includes TikTok.
The box itself also supports WiFi, Personal Video Recorder (PVR) functions (via an external USB flash drive) and comes with a voice remote.
Talk Talk TV 4K Box Specification
CPU & MEMORY ● Processor: BCM 72604 ● DMIPS: 7K dual core ● 3D graphics: OpenGL ES 3.0 ● System flash: 4GB eMMC ● RAM: 2GB DDR4
AUDIO / VIDEO ● Resolution: 4K@60 (UHD 3840×2160 p50/60) ● HDR10, HLG, Hardware Color Conversion ● Video decoder: HEVC/H265 (4Kp60-10bit Profiles 4.1 5.0 5.1), VP9 (4Kp60-10bit Profiles 0 and 2), AVC/H264 (1080p60, level 4.2), MPEG-2 ● Audio decoder: MPEG-1/2 layer I/II/III, AAC/MPEG-4, HE-AAC, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital+, Dolby ATMOS passthrough
SECURITY ● HDCP 2.2 over HDMI ● Hardware compatible with all major CAS and DRM (MS PlayReady, Verimatrix …) ● Watermarking (Civolution, Verimatrix)
CONNECTIVITY ● HDMI 2.0 (UHD) with CEC and ARC ● S/PDIF digital audio out (optical) ● USB 2.0 Type A (500mA) support for USB HDD ● Ethernet 10/100 BaseT ● Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac 2×2 dual band (2.4GHz – 5GHz) with Access Point mode ● DVB frontend T2+T+C ● Infrared receiver for Standard Remote Control ● Bluetooth for Voice Remote control ● Bicolor LED on front panel (Blue/red)
DIMENSIONS ● 128x128x38mm, rounded corners
POWER ● External power supply – In: 200-240V AC – Out: DC 12V 1.5A (TBD) ● Power consumption: typical < 10W ● Low power mode: < 0.5W
CERTIFICATIONS ● CE ● RoHS ● EU Code of Conduct
Other features include the universal search function, compatible with Alexa devices from Amazon, which enables customers to easily search for their favourite TV or movies across services.
Jonathan Kini, MD of TalkTalk Consumer and Direct Business, said:
“Our priority is to ensure we provide the best entertainment and fibre packages on the market, at great value. That’s why we’re delighted to partner with Netgem to release the TalkTalk TV 4K Box – bringing next level entertainment to our customers and easy access to TikTok, Netflix and Prime Video.”
Admittedly, set-top-boxes like this are unlikely to best the offerings from more established Pay TV providers, such as those from Sky and Virgin Media, but they do fill a useful role for those who haven’t already found a Pay TV, streaming box or internet connected TV solution that suits their needs.
It’s worth noting that some Android based TV boxes already ship with TikTok support, although these aren’t offered by any ISPs.
TalkTalk have a confused TV strategy with both Netgem and Youview going forward.
The YouView platform seems to be on the way out at TalkTalk, and more about supporting existing customers.
But TalkTalk said they plan on launching a new Youview based TV soon!
as a former customer of TalkTalk all i can say is that anything they do will be a total shambles, we had a 2 year issue with dropped PPP connection which miraculously vanished when the ISP was changed, the explanation I have is that TalkTalk had insufficent IPs in the area i suppose and regularly ran a release to drop the connections and allow users to connect, an engineer called fitted his spare router it connected and within a few minutes lost PPP he laughed packed his kit and said its them doing that centrally, Openreach had monitored the line and sync and that was fine, after a most amusing conversation with the “Head Office” I ditched TalkTalk and suddenly all was well it was interesting having 45 years as a IT engineer from mainframes downwards listening to the drivel spouted by the support team, it was obvious what was happening at least to me, they whined and threatened, I just pointed out in my most calm voice that it wouldnt be a good idea to annoy me, they backed away
I can’t help thinking that watching TikTok on a full size TV is a limited target audience
TalkTalk’s Huawei manufactured Youview boxes are painfully slow and clunky crap, the dilapidated hardware is mainly at fault rather than the Youview platform itself.
However NetJuck is dreadful in every regard, TalkTalk should pay their unfortunate customers to use the ‘service’ or just shutter their TV offer altogether.
Any you view box i have seen seems to be clunky crap to be honest, Freeview play is supposed to be the better system. If you want a set top box to record on, there seems top be very little choice, Manhattan and Humax. If I ever went back to watching TV, I don’t know what I would do, while my T.V as far as I know can record to a USB stick, I don’t know if it could do that on a timer and it is still only record one channel. I don’t use the tuner in the T.V, in fact I don’t normal TV at all, no licence.
There are many blu ray 4 k players with a hard drive and the ability to record.
When I went with a friend a few months ago to look for a set top box that records, all we could find was Manhattan and Humax. We did find some strange ones on Amazon, that looked a bit iffy. In the end they got a humax one, but it is not great to be honest. Years ago I had a single tuner humax box, and it was good, worked well and was pretty fast, now the quality seems to have gone off, using cheaper parts and less ram for the Os to run in and less powerful processors, so they run as slow as hell. I presume with more people watching stuff online, sales are slowing of these boxes.
Just a shame that portable media seems to have gone, like when we could record to VHS and later DVD. i still have a DVD recorder, but the tuner is analogue, if I used it again I would have to add a digital box to it, that is if I could find one with a scart.
To be honest, I have no interest in going back to watching normal TV, I don’t want to pay for the BBC.
@ad47uk: The BT branded 4K Humax and Sagemcom Youview boxes are quite snappy, the older Humax ones struggle with the current YouView software.
Humax FVP series Freeview Play boxes got a bad reputation to begin with due to software bugs however they’re pretty decent in my opinion. Humax’s most recent Android based ‘Aura’ Freeview Play box is dreadful though.
The Manhattans are at best OK, their hardware is of questionable quality and the software is inferior to Humax’s.
The choice of consumer DVRs is becoming more limited, it looks like the market is shifting to cheaper streaming devices.
Why are these always hamstrung with 100Mbit ports rather than gigabit.
Cheap and junk Netgem iptv. The reason for this is because of talktalk low budget cost to customers.
How the TalkTalk TV 4K Box compares (Supplied by FDM on 18th March 2022):
Rolling it at £4 a month just devalues all the other Netgem deployments with other ISP’s
March 2022 => UK ISP TalkTalk claims to be the “first ISP in Europe” to launch TikTok on a TV set-top-box.
The good news is that the new service has today gone live and it costs an additional £4 per month, the bad news is that it is Talk Talk offering the service.
Yes, TalkTalk said they plan on launching a new YouView based TV soon!
But i can see any more YouView offer (HD), at TalkTalk site, since yesterday:
This seems like a very poor offering from TalkTalk.
Although I am not going to dismiss Netgem completely, the (now discontinued) EE TV box manufactured by them was one of the best Freeview PVRs of its time.
It seems that TalkTalk TV doesn’t offer everything that is offered on Netgem TV! More content updates in the future?
1) Netgem TV (https://www.netgem.co.uk/whats-on/) => 200+ Channels & 35+ Apps
Cinema + Documentaries + Entertainment + Freeview + Kids + Lifestyle + Music + News + Radio + Sports
2) TalkTalk TV (https://new.talktalk.co.uk/tv-fibre-broadband) => 70+ live channels and 30 top streaming apps
“TalkTalk TV 4K Box makes it easier than ever to experience great entertainment. All your favourite content in one place, with 70+ live channels and 30 top streaming apps, as well as 4K viewing and voice control with Alexa. There’s no lengthy contract – just ultimate flexibility. You’re in control.”
Community Fibre 4K TV, also with Netgem, has much more to offer:
200+ live channels including Freeview, 50+ in HD! 35+ apps Premier Sports included (worth £12.99/month) 40,000 hours of on-demand content Choice of add-ons (BT Sport, Rakuten TV, BritBox, hayu, and more…) Unlimited Tablet and Mobile TV 4K TV box included (worth £149) from £10/month
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.