The USB add-on you've all been waiting for.
It’s a common occurrence that the simplest of ideas makes the most intriguing products and this collaboration between Hauppauge and Setanta Sports looks to have both those boxes checked. The simple premise is as such: allow budding sports fans watching TV via their computer to tune into Setanta’s large range of programming.
Until now that hasn’t been possible, as to tune into Setanta requires the use of a pay-TV card to decode the encrypted broadcasts. The obvious solution, then, is to provide a USB card-reader which works with PC and notebook TV tuners to allow receipt of Setanta’s broadcasts and, surprise, surprise, that’s exactly what Hauppauge is providing.
You’ll be able to use the reader with either a Freeview or Satellite tuner card, covering all possible bases, and it’s also pointed out that the viewing card can be shared with a dedicated set-top box so if you do have a Setanta subscription already you won’t require a second one to use the PC decoder, which is good.
So on to the important issue of pricing, you’ll find the card reader will set you back £99, including a months subscription, which isn’t exactly extortionate but is considerably more expensive than the £10 and £12.99 setup fee for Freeview and Satellite viewers, respectively. However if you don’t have or want Sky or a TV and you want to catch at least a decent selection of Premiership Football, Motor Racing, Golf and various other sporting pursuits then you’ll probably want to jump on this.