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Want BBC Three, FOUR, CBBC, CBeebies and BBC News in HD? You can, in 2014

Following today's decision by Ofcom, the BBC has finally announced the provision of all of their television channels in high definition, and they will be on cable, satellite and Freeview HD.

Following today's decision by Ofcom, the BBC has finally announ
published on UK Free TV

It appears that the BBC Three HD and CBBC HD will be added to the national Freeview HD multiplex (the one broadcast to over 98% of UK homes). Quite why we have to wait until next year, I'm not so sure.

In addition, the two new Freeview HD services that are in the "600MHz band" (between 550-606MHz) will reach 70% of the UK population will provide BBC FOUR (and CBeebies daytime) plus BBC News HD.

BBC News in HD from 2014.

See previous articles at Ofcom consults about Freeview HD two-multiplex upgrade plan in the 600MHz band and Ten more HD channels on two new Freeview HD multiplexes on air from 2014-18 - Freeview.

The three new streams (as they are called) will also find space on the Astra satellites for Sky and Freesat homes, plus they will be provided to the cable company for distribution that way.

In addition, "The BBC is also working on a proposal to launch regional variants of BBC One HD and BBC2 HD for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland." according to BBC to launch five new HD channels - News - Broadcast.

Channel 4 also offered to provide "simulcast at least one, and potentially two, television services on the [new Freeview HD] multiplex" (see Interim use of 600 MHz for DTT)

Ofcom's starement today, Award of the 600 MHz spectrum band Statement Publication date: 16 July 2013 says:

"This statement sets out our decision to proceed with an award of the 600 MHz spectrum band (550 to 606 MHz) to Arqiva on an interim basis. We will do so by granting a single licence for the establishment of temporary Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) multiplexes using DVB-T2/MPEG4 technology. The licence will run until 2026, but with a minimum duration to 31 December 2018, subject to revocation on 24 months' notice

One point of substantive challenge was that the proposed interim DTT licence might limit our ability to initiate any clearance of the 700MHz band - for mobile broadband -if such a clearance was to begin before the end of the proposed minimum licence term to the end of 2018. We have considered this argument carefully and decided, for the reasons set out in this statement, that the most proportionate way to address this issue is to add a clause in the licence that will allow us to vary or substitute the frequencies awarded in the 600 MHz band, as necessary, ahead of the end of 2018 in order to facilitate any transition of DTT from the 700 MHz spectrum."

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Tuesday, 16 July 2013

6:44 PM


Channel 5 declined the offer of the spare slot on the HD mux, and I think it's very unlikely that they will take one of the new slots.

As I understand it Channel 5 only have to transmit their main channel in SD on DTT to retain their Ofcom PSB licence. It's up to them if they want to make it available in HD on free-to-air TV, and they clearly don't.

It's a similar position with ITV2, ITV3 & ITV4 where ITV receives income from Sky for exclusive carriage. They are commercial channels so it's their call.

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Mark's 181 posts GB flag

7:52 PM

Mark: I think that Channel 5 balked at the cost of providing Channel 5 HD on Freeview to 98%.

IMHO, they might go for the cheaper option of 70% coverage from fewer masts.

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Briantist's 38,915 posts GB flag
leslie rainer

8:19 PM

why if frreview are getting all these new channels why not freesat get told to expect channels soon but not one been on for ages when are we going get some more channels

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leslie rainer's 43 posts GB flag
leslie's: mapL's Freeview map terrainL's terrain plot wavesL's frequency data L's Freeview Detailed Coverage

10:09 PM

Leslie looks like as usual I choose wrong horse in getting a Freesat HD TV and not Freeview.

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David's 306 posts GB flag

10:49 PM

David: I've never seen a TV which is 'Freesat only'! All TV's I've seen for the last five years have as standard a Freeview tuner, and from about three years ago, Freeview HD has largely become the norm.

In addition, you can buy TV's which have a Freesat tuner as well, the current ones being the Samsung 6 series upwards, high level Panasonic's, and in theory, many LG's (even the LG reps are unclear as to whether the F fitting on the back is actually for Freesat!).

If you've got a Freesat equiped TV, you will have Freeview. If it did not have a Freeview HD tuner, then a seperate box or PVR should solve that, which means you can get the new HD channels. Of course thee BBC might use Freesat as well...

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MikeB's 2,579 posts GB flag
MikeB's: mapM's Freeview map terrainM's terrain plot wavesM's frequency data M's Freeview Detailed Coverage
Wednesday, 17 July 2013
Mike Dimmick

1:05 AM

MikeB: I don't know why you're assuming satellite=Sky. The *exact same* transmissions are used for Freesat and Sky for all BBC services now, there's no reason to think that will be different for the new HD services.

The only difference is the payments to the platform operators to appear in their EPGs. Each box is looking in a different place for a different format of EPG data. Freesat charge slightly more for that than Sky do, but Sky *also* apply a 'platform contribution charge' based on viewing figures, so overall being in the Sky EPG is far more expensive. Unfortunately, that's where the viewers are.

Carriage on a UK-footprint transponder - allowing free-to-air transmissions - is also more expensive than a Europe-wide transponder and Sky's encryption fee. Most commercial channels have decided that they will make more profit if they go behind the paywall, despite Sky's outrageous charges, than relying on advertising alone and paying those extra transmission costs.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
Mike Dimmick

1:22 AM

Incidentally, the next Astra 2 satellite, 2E, was due to go up this Sunday. It also has a UK spot beam so should increase the capacity for FTA channels.

I said was. It's due to go up on a Proton Breeze M rocket, but the Russian government lost three navigation satellites (their version of GPS) in a failure two weeks ago. 2E is suspended until the investigation is complete. Federal Proton Launch | Failure Updates | Glonass | July 8 | International Launch Services

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag

5:52 AM

Mike B, My TV is an HD Tv and the HD is Freesat only, it will not get ant Freeview HD programs now let alone these new ones.
I made the wrong choice should have waited until Freeview HD sets came on the market.
It is most annoying to have to change it or buy a box for it. One perfectly good TV was dumped when this was bought.
It seems we can't get out of buying new equipment every 2 or 3 years if we want it all.
Yet on the other hand the BBC refuses to get rid of obsolete DAB radio and give us a decent system but that's another story.

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David's 306 posts GB flag
Davy Cooper
8:11 AM

Will they improve BBC radio channel service to give us 24 hour reception with all that extra bandwidth

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Davy Cooper's 1 post GB flag
Davy's: mapD's Freeview map terrainD's terrain plot wavesD's frequency data D's Freeview Detailed Coverage

8:33 AM

Looks like I do not have to get new TV or a box.
Freesat :: What's new?
Could Freesat logo be added to the article above please.

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David's 306 posts GB flag
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