ChrisTV Online! FREE helps you find and watch a range of TV shows and channels which you might not normally be able to access.
The program has a fairly familiar interface for this kind of tool: a sidebar provides various ways to browse the available channels, a central area displays whatever you select, and various playback options ("Play", "Stop", volume control and so on) are presented at the bottom of the screen. It's all fairly clear and straightforward.
We began by clicking the "OnlineTV" tab. This includes hundreds of channels and programmes, which can be grouped in various ways (by country, category, language and more). And in theory, all you have to do is click on one to begin viewing it.
In practice it's a little different, though, because a lot of the more popular channels aren't available in this free edition. And as per usual with this kind of programme, some of the links just don't work. There are still plenty of programmes you can watch, though, and it's entertaining to explore for a while.
If you're bored, though, there are also tabs which will allow you to view Justin.tv and Veetle channels. A "Movies" tab was less interesting, as it contained no options at all when we ran the program. And a "TV Shows" tab provides quick access to a couple of web sites where you can find and watch top-name TV sites in a click or two. You really can, too, although we found performance issues (the picture freezing every few seconds) made this almost unusable.
ChrisTV Online! FREE Edition has lots of frustrations. It's a little more ambitious than the usual front end to a list of links, though, and if you're interested in a free internet TV app then this is probably a good place to start.
And if you need more, the Premium edition supports the best channels, and allows you to record whatever you're watching. It can be yours for $30, and there's more on the program site.
Please note, the program tries to install three browser toolbars along with its own code, and these are unusually tricky to spot. We had to click "Decline" to avoid the first, and clear checkboxes to avoid the second, before clearing the "Install Complitly" checkbox on the final screen to bypass the third. Pay close attention during setup.
ChrisTV Online! FREE Edition has plenty of problems, frustrations and irritations. It also has more channels you can watch than most similar apps, though, and that's probably enough to justify its installation.