ovbg

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Posts posted by ovbg


  1. Well Krieg, on post 1839 you say OverPlay don't support Amazon DE, but on post 1842 you say they do? Which one is it?

     

    To be honest, it is not as black and white as you make out. The UnoTelly system of a billion dials and settings is perceived by many to be rather confusing - especially the way they configure it.

     

    No system is perfect. Hell, if UnoTelly support all the Amazon Primes like OverPlay but with a system you prefer, just switch to them. For my household, one dial generally speaking does the job as we don't have people watching different TVs at the same time.

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  2. I'm not sure what you are seeing Franklan, but I suspect it is just the way OverPlay manage Amazon Prime. It apparently is quite difficult because the UK one conflicts with Amazon Prime Germany.

     

    OverPlay support all three Amazon Prime services, and I believe they are the only ones to do so (probably because of the difficulties involved). The problem as far as I know is the German and UK ones which were originally LoveFilm and share certain servers, but not accounts.

     

    In order to use Amazon Prime UK or DE, you need to switch the locale selector to either the UK or Germany. This is not the case for the US since that was never anything to do with Lovefilm.

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  3.  

    If yo uwant to have the Win Pc as a dedicated media server there are ways to make it more convenient :

    F.Ex http://mymediaexperi...xbmc-appliance/

     

    True, but XBMC, although good for streaming local content, is extremely limited with on-demand and catch-up. Yes, there are plug-ins that can stream certain services, but they are rarely official and tend to be full of bugs, potholes or quite simply don't work.

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  4. Cadbury's have stated that they plan to use standard Cadbury chocolate instead of Cadbury Milk Chocolate. They never said they were using Hershey's or any American recipe.

     

    And I bet you, if I placed a single "original" milk chocolate egg in a bag filled with the new ones, I doubt anyone would be able to pick it out in a blind taste test.

     

    Almost all the complaints are Nationalist ones, with people crying fowl that some "foreign" country has got their dirty paws onto "our" chocolate.

     

    Anyway... spare a thought for the poor folk in New Zealand who has had this happen twice. First in 2010, the local manufacturer stopped making them and began importing the UK variety which some people once again claimed the new version tasted too horrible to eat - although if you listen to what they were really saying, it was something along the lines of "that some "foreign" country has got their dirty paws onto "our" chocolate." (seem familiar?)

     

    Now, just when they got used to that dirty foreign taste... it is all happening again.

     

    I bet few NZers could really taste the difference the first time around either. (Reference to an article in New Zealand's largest newspaper, the NZ Hearld, where they describe the British creme egg as... "shite pommy crap": http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10626016)

     

    Looks like the same sort of stuff happens everywhere.

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  5. It's a mixed bag these windows mini-PC's or in the case of this device, an HDMI stick.

     

    On one hand, you can get access to the widest range of streaming services. Nearly all have a Windows browser portal, and of course there is no issue mixing sites from different countries.

     

    On the other hand, the UI is designed for a desk environment, and no amount of magic-mouse or wireless mouse can make this comfortable on a sofa - the UI is just not designed for the 10foot environment. Then you have virus issues to take care of (something not considered for most STBs), and general Windows maintenance.

     

    As an HDMI portable Windows PC though, it is great, and I'll be grabbing one so I always have a test Windows box on hand.

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  6. Just a note about the AFTV Stick;

     

    When it does officially launch in Germany, don't be too surprised to see it on special for Prime subscribers for around €20 or so. This will likely last only a week or two.

     

    I have one whacked into the back of my test telly right now, and I can confirm that as of 14th January, there are no German or UK apps officially working for it, although through sweat and tears, I managed to get the native Zattoo app on to it.

     

    The chances this will start changing just before it officially launches here, and I expect both sideloading capability as well as multi-region - but that is only because there is no evidence this device will not offer this.

     

    It is noticeably not as swift as the more expensive box, but only because I have got used to the STB model - if you just buy this stick, you won't notice any major issues.

    The remote is also not as well made (construction quality) and misses voice-search, which I'll be honest - not only does it work, even after I've had 3/4 of a bottle of red wine, but I really miss it. There is an iOS and Android app to replicated it, but that's pants in comparison.

     

    When will it launch? No idea, although I suspect I will start seeing apps appearing on my stick before it does, so I'll let everyone know.

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  7.  

    Comedy Central has an app now for android with chromecast support. Although I have smartdns setup on the router, and the google dns blocked, it fails to play. I wonder if anyhow here has tried it with success or failure? Other geoblocked chromecast apps like iplayer and zattoo works.

     

    This is down to service support. It seems your Smart DNS provider does not yet support Comedy Central via Chromecast. (support is not just based on the service itself, but also sometimes by platform as well).

     

    The lack of support could be down to a number of factors, but usually it is that not enough people have requested it. Contact your Smart DNS supplier and add your voice. Even then, it could still sit in the "development tunnel" for a while unless of course a lot of people are requesting it.

     

    Interestingly enough, Comedy Central over Chromecast seems to be working via Unblock-US. You could use this as leverage.

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  8. Hang on a sec...

     

    Please specify exactly which part is not working... the tuner (this is the traditional bit where you flick between channels), or the Smart Hub (the Internet bit).

     

    I would imagine that the tuner has issues, since it was set for the US and not German digital transmissions. This part ,may be able to be remedied in an advanced hidden setting, but I am not entirely sure (it may even need a whole new firmware).

     

    If it can't be fixed, you can always add a separate receiver for little money.

     

    If it is the Internet TV side, this should work, and you can even change it to the US so you can watch Hulu (with the required Smart DNS or VPN of course). Try an Ethernet connection if Wi-Fi is having issues.

     

    You say near the end that you have connected via HDMI... what have you connected, as technically speaking, the first test should be without any additional boxes.

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  9. Zattoo works very well when sideloaded onto the AFTV - as long as you have a wireless mouse, since it really doesn't work with the normal remote. (but that costs about 5€ anyway).

     

    The sideloaded version of Zattoo has more features than the native one, as it has the full Zattoo Recall & Recording (missing on the native app since Germany doesn't have those Zattoo features).

     

    While Zattoo sideloads really well, not everything else does. You would never want to sideload Netflix for instance, as most Android streaming apps only provide a really low quality stream - fine for a small mobile device, but not so good for big TVs. Thankfully the AFTV has a native version of Netflix which is great.

     

    Also, I am not overly impressed with ITV Player and the BBC Player on the AFTV, as they just don't work so well on a UI they were not designed for (as well as poor video). 4oD won't even move across, probably as it turns its back on devices it deems as rooted (which is anything really that is not a proper mobile phone or tablet).

     

    But... Zattoo is one of the good ones for sideloading.

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  10. Zattoo quality remained down last night and early this morning, but at some stage all became normalized. I'm seeing the full quality streams on all platforms again.

     

    This issue only affected some German users accessing the Swiss service of Zattoo (either via Smart DNS or VPN), and it wasn't related to Smart DNS or VPN as all of them were affected. In fact, traffic to various nodes in Switzerland from Germany was severely crippled until this morning, and this indicated there was some sort of infrastructure problem.

     

    To be honest, it was a pity it repaired itself when it did, as I think I had just found a solution that would work when this happens again, but I can't really test it now as there is no perceivable difference between the work-around and the current well-performing feed.

     

    If anyone sees this happening again, send me a private message or email me, and if I am available, I'll start testing my work-around again.

     

    I suspect that a node somewhere in Germany has perhaps hardware issues that return every now and again.

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  11.  

    Is Zattoo just acting up for me at the moment (desktop version and android app stuttering right now)?

     

    I'm on 1&1 (resold Telekom VDSL50). Was perfect last night and I'm off sick today and wanted to flake out on the couch and watch some TV...

     

    I'm seeing that as well.

     

    Zattoo has dropped to poor quality on all tested platform via multiple Smart DNS services - so it doesn't seem to be Smart DNS causing the problem.

     

    Also, all my VPN servers in Switzerland are incredibly poor right now, regardless of which one I am using.

     

    Finally, if I do a speed test to Switzerland, some destinations are working fine, but others have dropped to a snails pace - and this is without VPN.

     

    I am thinking that there may be something down with a pipe to the country, or perhaps some infrastructure problem.

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  12.  

    I would quite happily pay the UK Licence fee if it enabled me to access the BBC without having to bugger about with third party get arounds.

     

    Unfortunately, as much as we would all love that, it simply can't happen in the current climate. This is because the license fee isn't a subscription, but effectively a tax, and you can't tax people in other countries (well, unless they visit your country). It is also marketed as a fee (sorry tax) to support the British public, and is what allows so many varied shows and topics to be made and shown without commercial interests in mind (not all shows are made to sell to a global audience like Sherlock or Dr. Who).

     

    So the only way would be a separate fee for non UK residents, but this would then come into licensing issues. If they had a fee that allowed people in Germany 100% access to the iPlayer, German television channels (and on-demand outlets) may cry foul when they paid for exclusive access to certain shows - and unlike many countries, the UK can't claim language as a natural form of encryption since English is so widely spoken.

     

    They would have to sell a cut down version, curated for each individual region - i.e. the failed BBC Global iPlayer. (failed because it was so crippled).

     

    The only possibility I can see is allowing donations, with no strings attached. This means honest people who live outside of the UK and still want to support the BBC could pay a donation, but it would still not grant them access. It may sound pointless, but you may be surprised how many people I meet that would be happy to do that - they love the BBC so much, they just want to help support it as they "unofficially" use it via VPN, DNS, Satellite or other methods. (Not everyone is a torrenting teenager bent on life-long freebees)

     

     

     

     

    Even the other UK catch-up services are a pain compared to the iPlayer, simply because you have to sit through the ads before the programmes start.

     

    Even though I prefer the ad-free environment of the BBC, I personally can live with ads on the other networks. There is of course a fine line between how many are acceptable, and if you think the UK has too many ads, try watching some American TV! Hell, German TV can also have what seems like an endless commercial break.

     

    All that said, the ITV Player and 4oD (and even Demand 5) are still far better than most other FTA catch-up services I have reviewed around the world (content aside - especially for channel 5!). They have more features, on more platforms and often more content than the vast majority of free catch-up services from the likes of US, Australia and especially Canada which seems stuck in the early 2000's as far as FTA catch-up goes.

     

    That said, the US does especially well with pay-wall versions. Hulu Plus is a real gem, which an amazing range of content, great video quality and excellent platform support, but it is not free and still has commercials - not to mention the horrible situation of still needing a cable contract to access some content - and this is where so much of America and Canada's FTA (OTA to them) catch-up fails. Unlike the UK, Americans and Canadians don't have unfettered free access to free-to-air television. To access most content - which should be pointed out was broadcasted free-to-air on a TV that traditionally only needed a bend coat-hanger to receive - requires an expensive long-term cable contract to unlock the so called "free" content or live streams - so you need to pay for the free stuff. It sounds crazy to us, but they must think it crazy that we can watch free stuff for free.

     

     

    My thought was that maybe SKY pay the BBC a fee for be able to carry their programmes on their platform.

     

    Yeap, as pointed out, and as odd as it may sound, it is the other way around.

     

    The logic being I guess that the EPG belongs to Sky, so they can charge if others want to use it. The BBC can't pretend to be too angelic here though. They have just begun to make it really hard for third party companies to gain access to their own programming information.

     

    I for one am a strong believer that programming information (especially for free or public services) should be available to all for free. It would be up to 3rd parties to present that information in a great way which would attract customers to their service.

     

     

     

     

    Even though the programmes are free to air, a SKY box automatically has the BBC as the very first channel in their TV guide. Having the BBC available must be a boost to the acceptance of satellite TV in general, I would have thought, so it is to SKY's advantage to have that. Surely a simple paid for PIN would be possible to enable access to anybody who wanted to receive it, in the same way as adult movies on Sky have.

    It's a missed business opportunity in my opinion, both for the BBC and for SKY.

     

    Agreed.

     

    Many countries however don't have this at all, so people have to switch between their cable box/channels and their FTA box/channels as they don't mix. A bit like if you had both freeview and Sky. Freeview doesn't have the sky channels, but Sky has many of the Freeview channels, so the chances are, you would stay on Sky's tuner as it is easier to switch between say BBC and Sky Sports or Sky One.

     

    But for many countries, there are no such government or commercial agreements and they are completely separate.

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  13. The BBC gets money from commercial sales, but it doesn't get money from Sky's fees (unless of course if you count anything Sky purchase from the BBC, which is funded by subs and ads anyway).

     

    The bulk of the BBC's income comes from the license fee, and that fee only goes to the BBC - it does not prop up any other network, including channel 4 which is (as few people realize) a public television service as well - but one financed by advertising (and it shows).

     

    There are people who believe the BBC will survive without a license fee, and it probably would survive. But it almost certainly would not be the same. It would then just be another commercial company with only one goal in mind... ratings and profits.

     

    Ratings means the only thing the entity will care about is the greatest denominator, which lets be honest, is not always the television that we enjoy or love so much.

     

    I'm not saying I don't enjoy major TV shows (I do enjoy the odd series from ITV and American networks). And I am not saying that the BBC only produces great content (it still makes some crap shows, and a great deal is for niche audiences). But if it must survive entirely on commercial grounds, it really would cease to be the great entity it is now.

     

    Have you ever wondered why the UK has the best catch-up service in the world? Why the BBC iPlayer beats every single other FTA catch-up service anywhere in the globe, and by a long shot? It's because it is not financed as a commercial entity. Its main goal is to get as much of its programming out to as many license payers as possible, which is why it is on more devices than any other catch-up network, why it has the highest quality streams, why it has even offline downloads and why it has live content as well.

     

    Look at the other end in the US, where the four main networks (ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX) are available on far fewer platforms, with far less content (with most locked behind a paywall despite the network being free-to-air), with no offline downloads and still has commercials. This is what happens when commercial interests are the only goal worth considering.

     

    The BBC will probably change, especially as so few people like the idea of paying for it (hell, most people like to think everything should be free). But I bet if that did happen, people will very quickly mourn the loss once it is gone or changed into something far less.

     

    The BBC may sound like a lot of money to some people, but it really is great value. Just look how much we pay in Germany for the equivalent here. We pay considerbly more per year, and get a lot less for it. Less great television, less great radio, and still have to sit through endless ads - on top of that, have you seen how crap the catch-up services are as well?

     

    All that said, I'm happy to pay the German license fee, as it still goes to provide a public service to others who need or enjoy it - even if I never watch German TV.

     

    I hope the UK license fee continues, but I think they should also start allowing donations, so that companies and philanthropists can help support it - but also this would allow people outside of the UK to pay into the BBC, without "granting them access" if you know what I mean, which would cause all sorts of licensing issues.

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  14. Tony, my Sky Go account has run out, but when I last tested it, it was working perfectly good via Smart DNS (which is generally better than VPNs for watching TV). I plan to rekindle my Sky Go account in the next couple of weeks to test out the PS4 app, but until then, because the video quality is so bad on iOS, I don't really bother.

     

    That said, maybe Sky Go have made a change or something and blocked it. I have an active Now TV account from Sky, and that seems to be working perfectly well.

     

    There are a lot of ways to watch UK television in Germany if you can't get a satellite dish on to your apartment. Just have a look here, or ask the people on this forum, and it can be viewed on any normal HDMI TV if you have the right set-top-box.

     

    In a nutshell, the best way is via Smart DNS which is usually cheaper than VPN, faster (as it doesn't tunnel everything) and easier to configure on Smart TVs and many STBs. There are lots of different Smart DNS providers, and everyone here has their favourite.

     

    The cheapest STB if you are in a Budget is the Now TV box (£10) but has a bit of a small gotcha in configuration. (It will offer Now TV, BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4oD and Demand 5)

    If you have an Apple TV, you can airplay BBC, 4oD and ITV, but not Demand 5, Now TV or Sky Go.

    Again, loads of options.

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  15.  

    The issue in this case is not getting the service running again....it is the worry that SKY will cancel your contract if they think you are a wicked evil person that lives the wrong side of the channel.

     

    But if they do that I will be first in the queue for a pirated service - the whole system is bonkers.

     

    Sky cut me off a long time ago, back before IP address issues when I was subscribing to their normal satellite feed. They decided because I had a German credit card, and didn't have a subsidized box which didn't connect to a telephone line (as it didn't need to being bought), that I must be watching outside of the UK.

     

    I had to create a new account.

     

    I agree with you that it is all bonkers. All of that money I paid to Sky, filtered down through the system so everyone was paid, who should have been paid, from the broadcaster to the content provider, the actors, directors, cameramen and grips. No one lost out... well, except of course for Sky Deutschland (which was Premiere I think back then??). Sky UK got my money instead of Premiere - which of course I didn't use because I didn't want their product.

     

    So, effectively, it was no different to me choosing say Kaufhof instead of Karstadt, and Karstadt getting the hump.

     

    It is really exactly the same via the Internet.

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  16. Periodically, many services flip the switch on VPNs and they do so to ensure they are "making a reasonable effort" to georestrict.

     

    Both Netflix and Hulu have actively blocked all major VPNs and Smart DNS users on one occasion over the last 12 months. Demand 5 has a habit of blocking things every time they update their iOS app. Same for some of the US OTA networks.

     

    Zattoo have also done this on occasions.

     

    Sometimes though it is just them making changes to their servers, but don't tell the Smart DNS companies. (Naturally).

     

    In all this time that I have been actively dealing with Smart DNS I have only ever seen one service declare war on Smart DNS, and that was Al Jazeera Sport who were under pressure from the English Premier League over football rights (and even then it was mainly targeting commercial use, i.e. pubs using Smart DNS and VPN to stream from AJS (now BeIN) and who were paying far less money for the public rights).

     

    But the odd hiccup should be expected on occasions. When they do go down, contact your VPN or DNS provider whoever they are, and let them know. The sooner that happens, the sooner they can switch servers and get back to normal again.

     

    As for the Netflix thing, I have a good idea what all this is about, but I can't publicly say anything here. In fact, don't ask privately either as the latest info I have is locked well up behind an NDA. That said, there shouldn't be anything to worry about.

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  17. @Allerhausen, That NowTV app is just the app, and just for the NowTV service.

     

    Keep in mind, that NowTV is not Sky Go. Sky Go has ITV content, but Now TV doesn't (which is why the Entertainment Pass is cheaper).

     

    The Now TV app is great for Sky Entertainment channels, or Sky Movies at the price it offers, as it also includes live as well as catch-up/on-demand content, but it won't get you UK free-to-air channels or content.

     

    The Now TV box will (which is the physical box rather than the service). This box costs £10 when sent to a UK address (which is amazing value considering it includes free delivery and an HDMI cable) and you do NOT need a Now TV monthly package. This box includes the BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4oD and Demand 5 apps which can all be accessed for free (outside of unblocking fees which you already have).

     

    You will need a friend or relative to send one over to you from the UK, or buy from a shop when in the UK, but this costs more as they include a package for Now TV with it.

     

    Hope this helps.

     

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  18. Here's one for Zattoo users on the Amazon Fire TV.

     

    As some may know, the dedicated app for Zattoo on the AFTV is amazing. It works almost like a normal TV to switch channels up and down, and makes a great platform for live viewing.

     

    The catch is no recall or recordings because it is only available for German users and not Swiss.

     

    But, there is an easy way to sideload the Android version of Zattoo (or almost any other Android app including ITV Player and more) on to the Fire TV - and without rooting. This will then work with recordings and Zattoo Recall.

     

    There are a few gotcha's of course, but all is explained in this guide here.

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  19.  

    Franklan

     

    works on Samsung Note 2 (Android)using Netflix version 3.9.1 both over the TP Link as the DNS router as per your post in this thread and with the DNS server numbers input direct to the phone over the main router.

     

    Just a hunch, is this an isolated incident relating to Unotelly only, the 1st link you posted was dated Oct 2014?

     

    Given that I think a lot on TT do use Overplay and along with OVBG's input I'm sure we would of heard something from them by now.

     

    This is an issue with all Smart DNS setups when watching Netflix on an Android device. Since Netflix on Android has such a poor video quality anyway, few people tend to use it on this platform. If it works on your device, and if you have set up your router for blocking Google's DNS servers, then this could be the reason for the success, otherwise I don't really know.

     

    No other platforms are currently affected. Apparently, it is possible to bypass this by doing the same thing for Chromecast on the home router, i.e. redirecting or blocking Google's DNS entries.

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  20. This is very weird indeed.

     

    Our ES series turns itself on all the time, the off (red) light is still on, and the screen is still black, but in a dark room you can still see light faintly bleeding from the screen. It then turns off about 20 seconds later.

     

    We don't get any sound though.

     

    I was wondering if this was some sort of self test or scheduled check for updates. I had a DVD player that done this - it would check for updates every morning at 8am, so switch on for 20seconds, then off.

     

    But sound... now that is weird. I'd contact Samsung over this one.

     

    What model is it by the way, as our F-series Samsung doesn't do this.

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  21. True, but that's a totally inelegant solution, both aesthetically as well as practically.

     

    Sometimes free options are fine, but since a good Smart DNS costs about the same as a good cup of coffee - once per month - and then that allows a whole pile of set-top-boxes or even built in Smart TV apps to work, many of which don't need anything touched on the router at all, then in my mind it is a much better solution.

     

    Besides, what happens if someone needs the laptop.

     

    If you can put Smart DNS on your router, then all you need is the £10 Now TV Box. Ten Pounds for a set top box that sits under the TV, with a proper (sofa friendly) remote so you can lounge on the big chair, with no cabling dangling across the room, and full access to the BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport, ITV Player, 4oD, Demand 5 and even of course, Now TV if you so choose.

     

    And that's the budget option., £10 one off, and the cost of one cafe coffee per month. Not breaking the bank, and a whole lot more normal than whacking a laptop to a TV via HDMI everytime you want to watch a programme.

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