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FrequencyCast UK - Show #11

The show notes to go with the eleventh of our online technology radio shows

Listen to FrequencyCast Show 11

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Here's what you'll find in FrequencyCast #11:


This show's news section covers the following:

  • TUTV BoxTUTV Anytime: Once again this is our top story, and the show starts with podline calls from Francis and Steve outlining their problems with the service. Despite January's software update, there are still lots of problems being experienced with Top Up TV Anytime, and they featured on BBC's Watchdog consumer programme at the end of January 2007. Apparently, we can expect another software update, perhaps within the first two weeks of February, and Top Up TV has apparently taken on more call centre staff to handle the volume of calls.

  • Virgin Media Launch Plans. Virgin Media is expected to launch on the 14th of February 2007, combining Digital TV, broadband, phone and mobile. The names Virgin Mobile,, NTL and Telewest come together as Virgin Media. Existing customers should recently have received a booklet, "Hello you" explaining all. There's rumours of a set-top box to rival the successful Sky+ product, which will offer High Definition programming. More details at

  • Skype Lie Detector: Liar Liar: Fans of the cheap calls-over-Internet service Skype, will be interested to know that there's now a Lie detector plugin available. With this, you can analyse stress patterns in callers voices to see if they're telling the truth. Bit of fun, or handy tool? You decide. This plug-in works with version 3 of Skype , and can be downloaded from
    Skype Lie Detector

  • A Nabaztag update: A new version of our favourite wi-fi bunny is due out soon. Called the Nabaztag Tag, this does same clever stuff as the existing Nabaztag, such as read out info downloaded over the 'Net, but has some new tricks - it has a bellybutton microphone (for voice recognition and recording), and can 'smell' by recognizing items that have a special tag attached to them. Clever stuff. See our Nabaztag page for more.

  • Recycle Mobile Phones: phones. We'd like to highlight this fairly scary statistic. In the UK. Over 1,700 mobile phones are purchased every hour, and each year 15 million phones fall out of use. There are several schemes in place to get these recycled, either for use in less developed parts of the world, or to be recycled safely. Here are a couple of links to check out:
    • - Cash for recycling your old mobile.
    • - Details of how to get a phone to start a new life, and perhaps make money for charities.
    • Nectar - Get a stack of Nectar points by returning your old phone for recycling - they'll supply a prepaid envelope for its return.
    • - Cash for recycling your mobile.

  • Douglas Adams Dirk Gently: Good news for Douglas Adams fans. Following the success of the recent dramatisation of the last three HitchHiker's Guide to The Galaxy novels, we can expect to hear the Dirk Gently Holistic Detective Agency books coming to BBC Radio 4 in October 2007. There will be three series, each with six 30 minute episodes, produced by Above The Title Productions (the firm responsible for the Hitch Hiker's Tertiary, Quandary and Quintessential phases).

Freeview news

It looks like Top Up TV are reducing their non-Anytime service even further with the Discovery channels and Cartoon Network disappearing from the live line-up in February. Bad news for those remaining TUTV customers on the old £7.99 a month package, which Top Up seems to have stopped selling, leaving Top Up TV Anytime as their main product.

It's rumoured that the space freed leaves room for Setanta Sport, starting on subscription from as early as February, and perhaps another Freeview channel...

Click Our Cube!

My CubezFrequencyCast has a have a Cube. Please do us a favour and support the FrequencyCast cube, as we try to get to the top of the pile. Go on - Tell your friends, and get them to help our Cube climb to the top of the pile...

MP3 and MP3 Players

By popular demand, we take a look at MP3 files, and MP3 players. Here's what we covered

  • Format - What actually is an MP3?
  • Is the iPod all that? We compare the iPod Video with the Creative Vision:M
  • We take a look at a number of devices: The iRiver U10 , Oono MiniDAB One, Samsung YP-K5 , Oakley Thump 2 shades and the Microsoft Zune
  • Help with converting vinyl and cassettes to MP3, and the newly-legalised mp3 FM transmitters

Take a look at our dedicated MP3 page for all we have to say on the subject

Second Life

Presenter Carl's been accusing Pete of not having a life for some time now, but now Pete has not just one life, but two. Second Life is an online virtual world, where people can meet, talk, and interact in a number of odd ways. If you have a broadband connection, it's well worth giving this a try. More than that, we're encouraging our listeners to get in touch with us if they have a Second Life and we'll try a clever experiment. Our handle in Second Life is "Frequency Cardiff". More at on

Second Life


Thanks to everyone who got in touch. In this show, we respond to the following mails and calls:

  • Imation StakkaImation Disc Stakka: Nicola asked us if we knew much about the Stakka - This is a box that holds up to 100 CDs or DVDs and plugs into your PC's USB port - From the PC, you can load any one of disks - you can stack up to 5 of these together for access to 500 CDs or DVD. A handy way of storing your disks for easy access. The Stakka costs around £100, but we've seen them cheaper at Misco. and Dabs

  • Home Hub Phone volume: Malcolm asked if there was any way to download ring tones for the BT Hub Phone, or at least increase the volume more than you can on the handset. Well, as far as we can tell, neither are possible.

  • Freeview Missing Channels - A recurring question . If you've accidentally deleted channels, or are missing channels, you need to go to the on-screen menu on your Freeview box,. then perform a channel scan. If you're not able to get some of the channels you're expecting to get - it could be a reception issue. Try our Freeview Advice page for help.

  • BT Hub phone time: We heard from Dave Rivers, who's been having some kerfuffle with the time and date on his BT Hub Phone time resetting itself. We suspect this is because the time on your Home Hub is wrong, and the phone is getting its time from the Hub. Check out the Home Hub FAQ for help with setting the Hub to update its time automatically.

  • Top Up TV and Setanta: We had a few questions from Nicholas Skippins about Sport on Top Up TV Anytime. Top Up's site makes reference to August 2007 as a launch date for Barclays Premiership matches from Setanta Sports. Nothing else official has been announced yet, and pricing probably won't be announced until closer to the start of the season, as Sky, BT Vision and Top Up TV will be competing for our viewing. We'll include an update on our show when we have some more details.

  • AM on a TomTom SatNav? We had a slightly bizarre call asking for help as the caller couldn't get AM on their TomTom. We're confused... AM as in AM radio? Well, the TomTom doesn't have a radio in it, so no AM radio. If you're referring to the time (AM/PM), this can be set by going to the menu, selecting 'Change Preferences' and going to 'Set Clock'.

  • Separate DVD and Freeview? We had a mail from Tania asking which was best - an all-in-one Freeview and DVD recorder, or two separate boxes. Well, the advantage of a DVD recorder with built-in Freeview, is that it's just one box - so there's less clutter, less wires and less to connect. It's also easier to programme recordings (as you don't have to remember to set the set-top box onto the right channel, and get the recorder to record via SCART). With separate boxes, there's less to go wrong (e.g. if DVD recorder breaks, the Freeview box still works)

In this show, we also launched our campaign: The Stop it Campaign to find out what hacks you off!

If you enjoyed listening to the show, check out our previous shows , or have a look at our Topics page to see what we've covered recently.


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