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Can I stop paying Sky and use my satellite receiver to get Freeview ?

Can I stop paying Sky and use my satellite receiver to get Freeview ?

Can I stop paying Sky and use my satellite receiver to get Free
published on UK Free TV

Yes, but only "sort of".

Freeview is the name of the (BBC-backed) digital TV system that uses hilltop transmitters to rooftop aerials. It is run separately from the "Sky" satellite-to-dish service. free-to-VIEW is a term for satellite channels that need a viewing card to watch, but not to collect a subscription. free-to-AIR channels are ones that can be received without needing a viewing card or subscription.

The free-to-AIR satelite service backed by the BBC and ITV is called Freesat. The free-to-VIEW service operated by Sky is called fSfS or Freesat from Sky.



As long as you have finished your first year, you can leave Sky when you want. To do this just give Sky a call and tell them you don't want to subscribe any more.

If you stop subscribing you will be able to watch the hundred or so free-to-air channels listed on free channels list. This service is called Freesat from Sky (fSfS).

Some of the channels on the Freeview service are subscription only on satellite, specifically: 4Music, Challenge, Dave, Dave ja vu, Quest, VIVA and Yesterday . See these links to compare the TV channels on Freesat-from-Sky and Freeview, and to compare radio stations on Freeview and fSfS. Many homes have free satellite and Freeview to get the full range of channels.

You will still need to keep your Sky viewing card. If you stop subscribing on a Sky contract, you can keep using that card to watch 5USA, 5* and PICK TV, the so-called "free-to-view" channels. (All ITV channels are free-to-air).

It is not possible to plug an aerial into a Sky Digibox to receive Freeview channels because the boxes have not been designed this way.

You will continue to get the full Sky EPG listings; you just will not be able to watch subscription channels.

If you want to go for High Definition, HD, you can swap out your Sky box for a Freesat one very easily.

A card is not needed to watch BBC services, but it is needed to get the correct BBC ONE and BBC TWO regions on 101 and 102.

Another option is to disconnect your Sky Digibox altogether and Upgrade from Sky to Freesat - ukfree.tv. If you have an HD-Ready TV and a standard Sky box, this is a good option.



All questions
BBC Three Linear channel re-opens1
Removing all barriers to communication between diverse cultures2
How do I get a test card with Freeview3
What can I do when my Sky Digibox says 'No Signal' or 'Technical fau4
Can I receive UK TV in Ghana?5
In this section
Can I use my ex-contract sky digital satellite receiver to get Freeview channels1
What can I do when my Sky Digibox says 'No Signal' or 'Technical fau2
I have a Panasonic TV with integrated Freeview how can I record Freeview channel3
My Sky box has a "no signal message" - what do I do?4
How do I change the RF output channel on a Sky Digibox?5
I have split the signal from my satellite dish and now nothing works.6

Comments
Monday, 8 August 2011
Briantist
sentiment_very_satisfiedOwner

7:53 AM

U: Thanks for that information. Of course, these days the digital TV networks use the much more reliable fibre-optic SDH networks.

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
Briantist
sentiment_very_satisfiedOwner

7:55 AM

U: Any chance of a link to a photo of a poster showing the "sports which will be on the big screen from broadcasterrs other than sky."?

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
Briantist
sentiment_very_satisfiedOwner

8:06 AM

kelly: No, Sky can't cut the signal to a single dish - the satellite is shared by everyone.

However, you can't connect a FreeVIEW device to the dish, you must use a FreeSAT box.

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
M
Michael
sentiment_satisfiedGold

11:24 AM

Would Channel Five have any authority to demand that BskyB stops using this soft encryption on its channels? Would i be wasting my time writing to Channel five?

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Michael's 368 posts GB flag
Briantist
sentiment_very_satisfiedOwner

12:11 PM

Michael: I would suspect that as Richard Desmond "hates" Rupert Murdoch, Channel 5 would probably love to have the channels unencrypted.

However, Channel 5 has a contract with SSSL and I would suspect this stipulates the encryption stays.

In particular Channel 5 HD is one of those "exclusive to Sky" HD channels that Sky bribed into existence.

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Briantist's 38,910 posts GB flag
M
Mike Dimmick
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

12:24 PM

Michael: Channel 5 have *contracted* Sky to use soft encryption. The space they are renting on the Astra satellite cluster is on the Astra 2A satellite's south beam, which covers all of western Europe. If they were not encrypting, so that only UK homes could decode the signal, they would have to pay a lot more for the import programmes that make up a lot of their schedule.

To go free-to-air they would have to pay more for their programmes - which I presume Channel 4 did when going free-to-air HD on Eurobird 1, also on a Europe-wide footprint, though they use an unusual mode - or move to a satellite with a smaller footprint. The only one in the cluster at 28.2°E with a British Isles footprint is Astra 2D, and it's full.

Ireland's RT has the same problem, only smaller - their channels, which should really be free-to-air, are encrypted on the 2D satellite so they don't have to pay for the rights to cover the larger UK market. The free-to-air solution for them is Eutelsat's KA-SAT satellite, which has spot beams covering much smaller areas. The drawback is that it's orbiting over 9°E, meaning a switch from free to subscription TV, or vice versa, is a lot more complicated than just replacing the box.

SES Astra recently launched a new satellite, Astra 1N, which is going to temporarily provide more capacity at 28.2°E before the new 2E, 2F and 2G satellites are launched. They were ordered in November 2009 and it can take a few years before they're ready to go up and into service. They're likely to replace 2A and 2B which were designed for a 15-year lifespan. 2A was launched in 1998 - making its end-of-life around 2013. 2B was launched in 2000 and is expected to need replacement around 2014. Hopefully the new satellites will have tighter beams, reducing rights issues.

2F is supposed to go into service late next year, then 2E in mid-2013 and 2G follows in early 2014.

It would be nice if Sky's two encrypted multiplexes could be kicked off 2D and more space made for free-to-air channels, and possibly also RT's transponder freed up. However, the UK regulator has no power to do this - Astra is licensed in Luxembourg.

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Mike Dimmick's 2,486 posts GB flag
N
NottsUK
sentiment_satisfiedGold

1:30 PM

Mike Dimmick: I see on the SES-Astra web site it shows that Astra 1N has three footprints. UK Spot Beam, Pan-European Beam 1 and Pan-European Beam 2. The UK Spot Beam looks tighter than the footprint of Astra 2D. If for example BBC move their channels on to Astra 1N, with its tighter footprint on the UK, will this mean that people living in Spain who can now receive the BBC channels find them missing.

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NottsUK's 345 posts GB flag
U
U
sentiment_satisfiedBronze

2:29 PM

I could not get permission to take photograpf of poster as it has company name and phone no of contractor who provides this service to pubs in Ireland.

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U's 98 posts IE flag
M
Mike Dimmick
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

4:38 PM

NottsUK: Found them eventually at Footprint Graphics 28.2 E - SES ASTRA ! The fact sheet has now also appeared at ASTRA 1N - SES ASTRA which indicates that it will cover the current frequency ranges of satellites in the cluster, but also fill in the gap at 10.95 - 11.20 GHz between 2D and Eurobird 1 (16 transponders).

No indication yet exactly which transponders/frequencies will be on which footprint though.

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

6:09 PM

Briantist read Sky,s the limit for publicans and sportsfans at www.mayonews.ie re non SKY sport in Ireland

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U's 98 posts IE flag
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