Free-to-air broadcasters need to embrace broadband in order to deliver genuinely interactive television and video-on-demand services, as informitv has observed for over five years now. Far from showing technical leadership, with the completion of the transition to digital television, they now realise that while the broadcast model has many benefits, it’s inherently limited. Having generally eschewed developments to enable broadband hybrids, they are belatedly seeking to graft on extensions to their existing broadcast standards. The spectacular success of Freeview in the United Kingdom owes little to its comparatively primitive technology platform, which was arguably already obsolescent from the outset. As Head of New Media Operations at the BBC at the time, I recall the launch was a hurried rescue mission following the failure of commercial digital terrestrial television services. The specifications have been progressively extended to support digital video recorders, high-definition, more efficient transmission and an internet protocol return path, but the basic architecture has little in common with the world of the web. It’s therefore ironic that the Australian version of Freeview is choosing technologies on the model of its British counterpart, albeit with its own particular profile. One must also wonder whether every national market can afford to sustain its own esoteric standards, and whether multinational consumer electronics manufacturers will be motivated to support them, in a world where web standards already address a global market.