ONdigital Interactive & Services

Throughout the years that ONdigital had operated it had launched several interactive services to enhance and compliment their channel line up, and to make their service more competitive compared to Sky Digital and the cable operations by ntl and Telewest at the time. ONdigital used the MediaHighway and later MHEG5 interactive standard.

Several of the screenshots were hosted on DTT NEWS which has long since gone offline, they have been archived here for future refernce.

ONview

ONview was launched in mid 2000 as a replacement for the channel ‘FirstONDigital’ which broadcasted slideshows of upcoming news and service launches for the ONdigital platform on channel 20. ONview however was supposed to be the central portal of all ONdigital customers and operated as an MHEG service, I guess to entice non subscribers using IDTV’s to subscribe? At this point you could buy IDTV’s of which some came with ONdigital firmware loaded (with some being nothing more than a Nokia Mediamaster box being stuffed inside), some TV’s (Sony) did not feature this software and had their onw, which would explain why ONdigital moved from the MediaHighway middleware to the MHEG middleware.

ONguide

The ONdigital EPG, a tacked on MHEG5 app. The ONdigital boxes only featured a Now and Next style EPG built into their firmware, and was reliant one either a monthly magazine or a couple of interactive guides offered by BBC, ntl or Teletext.

Compared to Sky and cable its very poor, with no ability to set reminds unless you manually set the timer in the main menu. Meanwhile this is what the completion TV guide looked like…

ONinfo

ONinfo, with information about ONdigital’s services and how to subscribe, a later revision is shown on the right with information about ONmail and ONrequest

ONprizes section, where details of competitions and how to enter them.

ONsport – Sport highlights for ONdigital’s dedicated sport channel

Information on movies and event on ONrequest are promoted here and information on how to order from the service.

ONrequest

ONdigital’s Pay-Per-View service, where films could be ordered and screened across 5 multiplexed channels. Customers could access the service by going to channel 50 and pressing the text button when prompted.

A common thing you see with Onrequest is sweets, or sweet wrappers. I’m not sure on the connection between sweets and per-per-view movies

This part of the service is where you can view information about the movies that are offered, followed by a description of the event and the actors and director involved, along with the age rating.

To actually order the event you had to press the guide button and then choose option 2, which would load the actual PPV application where the customer could order the event, as long as their box was connected to the phone line. This was all done in the second part below.

The screen where you order the event itself. This looks like a MediaHighway applet.

This banner appeared when you entered an ONrequest channel whilst an event was currently being shown. Customer could see a 10 min preview of the start of the programme to entice them to order

Sometimes things went wrong

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