Panasonic rolls out iPlayer update for 2009 Freesat TVs

Update: adds Twitter too

Panasonic has just rolled out the long-awaited update to 2009 Freesat TVs, to enable users to access BBC iPlayer via the red button service.

However, it’s not immediately obvious to users – if you go to the Setup menu and tell the set to look for new software, it won’t find any, as it doesn’t appear to be broadcast “over the air”, that is via the satellite signal.

Instead, you need to start the VieraCast function by pressing the dedicated button on the remote control, and you’ll then see a screen telling you there’s new software available. Click OK, then select Yes, and the software will download via your internet connection. So, you’ll obviously need the TV connected to the net to download the update, but you have to do that for iPlayer anyway (and see this article for my recommendations on how to connect up a set).

I’ve tried this on my set, which is one of the V10 models. I’d love to hear from other people with 2009 models, so we can establish whether or not the update is available across all the VieraCast models from that year.

When you’ve updated, your set’s software version will be 2.303.

Panasonic's Twitter Client
Now you can tweet from your TV! Panasonic's Twitter client, shown here running on a 2009 V10 series Freesat TV

This update also adds a Twitter client to the set, which is a surprise – I thought that it would only feature on 2010 models, which have USB ports and keyboard support. But you’ll find Twitter in there too, and you can compose messages, if somewhat laboriously, using the numeric keypad on the remote control.

Thanks to GreenBars on the Digital Spy forums for the heads up on iPlayer.

105 thoughts on “Panasonic rolls out iPlayer update for 2009 Freesat TVs

  1. Hi, I have a 2009 G15 and when I go into VieraCast it takes me to the usual sites and doesn’t ask about s/w downloads. Am I missing something?

  2. Me too …….G10b owner who justified the purchase by telling HER she would be able to access her beloved iplayer through it .
    I splashed the cash and the Panny didn’t deliver.
    Waiting with baited breath for download news . Presume it’s a good idea to leave on standby 24/7 and enable standby autosearch .

    1. Yes; you need to leave it with the standby search on to make sure that the update is received when it’s next broadcast.
      I will be able to put in another call to Panasonic’s PR people at the start of this week to find out what’s happening.

  3. I’m another G10 owner without the i-Player. When I manually update it says I have version 1.612 and I’m up to date!
    But I’ve seen mention elsewhere of version 1.617 which may be the i-Player upgrade.
    Do I have to plug in an ethernet cable before the new option appears on the red button list?

  4. Hi Ive got a panasonic TX- 37LZD81 TV
    Using a freesat dish

    Ive set up home plugs and got network connection BUT there is no software update available through the TV.

    When i press the Viera Link button -it says service not available

    GRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

    1. The ’81’ models are from 2008, and don’t have Viera Cast (VieraLink is something different – controlling connected devices like blu-ray; Cast is internet stuff).
      The update to the 2008 models was scheduled to come after that for the 2009 ones, which is frustrating for those who bought into Freesat right at the beginning. The 2009 update was late, so that’s probably bumped back the 2008 one as well – I shall try to find out more. But in the meantime, do make sure that the set is configured to check for updates when it’s in standby, and that you don’t switch it off completely via the main switch.

  5. I am another G10 owner who missed the recent OTA download due to moving house. Has anyone had a response from Panasonic as to when or if there will be another OTA broadcast? Thanks guys.

  6. OTA update starts tomorrow for G15B series & V10B PDP series. For one week only! Surely the 2008 models can’t be far behind… can they?!

  7. Good news about the G10 update, Nigel, thanks.
    I spoke to Panansonic yesterday (Oct.13) and they said it was coming soon. They took my contact details to let me know, but a firm date is even more promising.

  8. I made an enquiry in a Panasonic Store today, where the assistant showed me an email he had received yesterday with confirmed dates for OTA downloads. I dint note all models but saw that the G10 series download is running from 20/10/10 to 27/10/2010.
    Hope this helps.

  9. I am trying now to get i player have dish and freesat up and runnin, just got tv to recognise it was connected to internet – I had connected router via a small cable not ethernet – same colour though!

    Anyway still no iplayer – telling me software is up to date when I search so I will leave on standby for now and hope that 20th is the day it arrives.

    Thank you all as I managed to get this far from your postings and I am a complete techno nitwit

    Panasonic TX – L37G10 owner :-)

  10. Hello to all G10 owners that cant wait for the update I found a list of available downloads on freesat at this website: http://www.dtg.org.uk/industry/download_schedule.php and according to their list G10 wont have updates between 20/10 to 27/10. Perhaps like nigel said will be from th 3rd of november here is their list:

    Freesat N 22-09-2009 Open

    LG Electronics (UK) Ltd LF7700 ATV 1.00.19 / DTV LGHST1.00.14 N 03-12-2009 Open

    Humax FOXSAT-HD FOXSAT-HDR Foxsat HD/HDR v1.00.26/v1.00.13 N 04-02-2010 Open

    Sony KDL-XXW58XX KDL-XXZ58XX KDL-XXV58XX 1.720SA N 24-03-2010 Open

    TechniSat Digital UK Ltd TECHNISAT HDFS version 1454 D patch 6 N 25-03-2010 Open

    SAGEM DTR94 Freesat 1.0.4 N 20-05-2010 Open
    Harvard HD ZAPPER : Bush / Goodmans / Grundig 1.9.1 N 26-05-2010 Open

    Panasonic PAL 09: G15B series & V10B PDP series v2.103 R 13-10-2010 20-10-2010

    Panasonic PAL 09: V10B-LCD Series v2.303 R 20-10-2010 27-10-2010

  11. Email from Panasonic today:

    Unfortunately, the planned update for the BBC iplayer service for Panasonic Freesat G10 Viera televisions has been slightly delayed. This is due to the fact that further software has been required in order to cater for an additional service implemented by the BBC. This service is known as copyright protection system (CPS) on BBC iplayer material. The addition of this software is required to ensure on-going full functionality of the BBC iplayer.

    Panasonic sincerely apologises for the delay, but it is anticipated that the update will be available from the 11th November. However, again, this is subject to change.

  12. Very disappointed the 81 series models still don’t have a firm date for the update – definitely not a case of ‘first come first served’!

    I’ve had mine plugged into the Ethernet ready and waiting since 2008 (first for BBC, now for Panasonic).

    No wonder few in the UK bother with new TV technology.

  13. I also have a G10 and I’m waiting for the ITV player – mine says ‘Arriving in 2011’ – when I scan for updates it tells me I have the latest version. Not impressed with Panasonic!

    1. ITV player isn’t down to Panasonic. If you have the latest software, you should be able to get BBC iPlayer.

      ITV is beta testing, and will be made available to the public later this year; when it is, as long as your set supports iPlayer, it should get ITV Player too. But that’s down to ITV in this case, not Panasonic.

  14. Also on a TX-L32G10B, on BBC channels red button brings up iPlayer, TV is on version 1.620 – is this the latest version?

    Should I be able to access iPlayer from another menu, or is red button the latest bit to have been added? (I think so, just seeking clarity.)

    Any news on any other iPlayers coming up (such as ITV)?

    Normally don’t have sky plugged in to freesat as both current sky cables go into the sky box, do I need to keep a cable in the TV and it on standby just in case there are updates transmitted?

    Thanks for this thread, rather useful.

  15. Relating to what @ Nigel said – I disagree!
    I an sure that ITV Player is down to Panasonic, for their range of TVs, and without a software up-date, I don’t believe that it will work even though you are able to get BBC iPlayer aren’t “standards” wonderful!!
    I also have a feeling that Panasonic may never provide ITV Player capability for their 2008 range of Freesat HD TVs, but hope to be prooved wrong?

  16. Yes, 2008 model, updated last night – iPlayer works, I chose the “High” option (can’t remember the exact wording) it wasn’t 1080p, but still good quality – better than my PVR (which is only SD freeview).

  17. Is there any alternative way of updating a Panasonic G10 LCD other than an OTA?
    It seems that G20’s can be updated by downloading the firmware and then creating an SD card capable of update when inserted into TV.
    Panasonic global support provides this for G20 but not for G10
    Thanks

  18. I have A Panasonic TX-L37G10B running filmwear version 1.612> I’m pluged into internet connected to freesat set update to auto but can not update only receive the message that I’m running the lateses filmwear which I know is not true. Have Panasonic stopped updating this model if not is there any way I can force an update. Just want to connect to iPlayer. Any help would be greatfully recieved. Panasonic site seems to disown this actual model which suggests that the TV is past its sell by date allready its only 2 years old. Would put me off buying Panasonic again

    Smithy

    1. G10? That one doesn’t have VieraCast does it?

      Models with VieraCast can get their firmware over the internet from Panasonic’s servers, but those without are reliant upon the firmware being broadcast as part of the Freesat data stream, and it costs money for that to happen. It was broadcast some time ago, and Panasonic may have considered that all the sets that need it would have picked it up on one of the previous occasions.

  19. Thanks for your reply Nigel. So it looks like Paniasonic dont support equipment purchased under 2 years ago. I think this is unacceptable and not a way to treat their customers. New buyers of Panosonic equipment be aware

    1. I wouldn’t say that they don’t support it; simply that at the moment, the update isn’t being broadcast. I’ll drop them a line and find out if/when they next plan to get it broadcast.

      All the manufacturers for Freesat share the same slots for broadcasting firmware updates, so they can’t have something running continually; it has to take its place in the queue.

  20. Thanks Nigel I will be very interested to know what they say for as far as I understand they will no longer be broadcasting updates which is outrageous

  21. Hi Nigel any news from your friends at Panasonic regarding system updates. Or is it a case of no news is bad news for TX-L37G10B owners

  22. Hi Nigel,

    Also a TX-L32G10B owner, waiting in hope for a firmware update. Is one likely via OTA, any other way of getting this update?

  23. Hi,

    I have not had my TV (TX-P42G10B) connected to Freeseat as I have been using sky since purchase.

    I have now cancelled sky, but obviously my TV’s firmware hasn’t been updated and doesnt include the BBC iPlayer. Is there a file I can download and install from the SD card? When I scan for updates it comes back saying my TV has the latest software (not True), and I cant see any options for OTA updates in the near future…..

    Thanks,
    Marc

  24. Best bet would be to switch the F plug on the end of the cable from your Sky box to your TV (if not already done), configure the TV via its menu (menu\setup\system menu\system update) to “Auto update search in Standby” and then not turn the telly off overnight. You can always try forcing an update via the menu, but that might not always work, depending on what’s being transmitted at that point.

  25. Copy of email from ITV ref my TX37LZD81 received 7 days

    Dear Dave
    Thank you for contacting ITV.
    We are always looking at a variety of options for making ITV programming and associated content available to viewers via various platforms.

    Although we currently only support specific Samsung Smart TVs we would hope to provide access to other manufacturers in the future

    ITV strive to deliver as many ways as possible for its customers to utilise the various services we offer and so please keep up to date by visiting our website.

    Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any further questions.
    Kind Regards

    1. I don’t believe so, no. Sadly, most of the main players are decidedly spotty in terms of support for different TV platforms, other than the BBC

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