BT to sell Internet-ready Freeview TV



BT Group Plc said on Tuesday it had signed a joint marketing alliance with Freeview.

Freeview boxes are now being sold through BT's website, marketed under the "BT Digital TV" slogan. One box at £89.99 is a basic DTT receiver, while a more advanced model priced at £129 supports a BT Openworld Internet connection. Also, BT phone subscribers who also take the caller display service will see callers' numbers displayed on the TV via the set-top-box.

The decision to join forces with Freeview, which now has two million viewers, is a reversal of BT's strategy. The former telecoms monopoly said last November that it had considered the idea, but had no plans to take on Freeview as a partner.

The deal is similar to BT's marketing deal with satellite pay-TV group BSkyB , which backs Freeview along with transmitter operator Crown Castle CCI.N and state-funded broadcaster the British Broadcasting Corporation