Discussion in 'Satellite TV, Sky TV & FreeSat' started by Bilbob, Apr 27, 2007.
Hey only a decade too late
Spring 2008 no doubt means that they are waiting for CH4 to ends it's contract with SKY so they can offer at least 3 of the 4 main terrestrials and I would still be surprised if Five doesn't go FTA at the same time.
As for HD support well by the end of the year H.264 capabilities may probably offer no premium on large scale wholesale purchasing by manufacturers and including the relevant scaling and digital output is a no brainer.
I just hope my trusty PACE 2200 hangs onto for another year
Wouldn't it be a kick in the teeth if the BBC were stopped from offering HD due to the public value test and ITV still thought low bitrate SD was cutting edge
Please excuse a daft question, but what exactly is the difference between 'Free-sat' and what Sky already offer for a one off payment of £20 (and I can't remeber what they call it). For £20 you get a card that offers all the FTA channels on Astra2, which are scrambled (ie effectively Ch4 & 5, plus all the rest which are no longer scrambled) What great change have I missed?
I wonder if you'll be able to get the signal using a sky satellite dish, bit annoying if you can as I moved to Freeview a year or so ago and gave away my sky dish and cabling only a few weeks ago to a friend.
Sky offer a "Freesatfromsky" service which comprises the FTA programmes plus CH4, Five, Sky3, Five Life and Five US.
The BBC had already registered the "Freesat" name so, thanks to Sky, things are going to get confusing - especially when you consider that 99.9% of the general population still don't know the difference between "Freeview" and "Freesatfromsky".
The main difference is that BBC "Freesat" won't require a viewing card or a *Sky* Digibox and (hopefully) won't fill your EPG with a plethora of God- and Shopping-channels.
The official Freesat platform will have its own EPG - which means that broadcasters don't need to pay Sky handfulls of dosh to go on theirs. It will also almost certainly have 'open' options for encryption (ie a CAM slot or two) which means that broadcasters won't be beholden to Sky for their encryption either. Sky are known to charge big bucks for their proprietary scheme - so much that it prompted BBC and ITV to pull their channels even though they were offered supposedly 'favourable rates' from Sky. So all in all, good news for anyone wanting to broadcast their programming via satellite to a UK market.
From a consumer point of view, we'll be able to buy boxes at all manner of price points and specifications from different manufacturers. With Sky, you are limited to what Sky offer you, a very narrow and expensive choice. It also means no more having to pay a tenner a month for the privilege of using your own PVR to record programmes. Fully capable plug in cards for computers and Media Center PCs should also be available. On the programming side, there should be a much increased choice of free (and pay) channels as a result of the platform being opened up, Basically, good news all around for the viewer. And HiDef without paying a tenner extra a month is also in prospect.
All in all, great news. Way overdue but better late than never. I think Sky are already looking to be on a bit of a sticky wicket after pulling their basic channels off of cable and being warned by advertisers about pulling them from Freeview too. With any luck they'll have some real competition for the DSAT market and will have to adjust their pricing structure and hardware lineup accordingly.
Unfortunately, all those God and shopping channels are going to be at least as, if not more, prevalent on Freesat. But the 'Good News' is that there should be an improved selection of entertaining channels too.
We should be able to satellite PVR boxes at the same price as terrestrial PVR machines but with even better features and more channels (maybe hidef too) and no need to pay Sky every month just because we want to record programming on our own HDDs.
Does this mean that the FTA channels will have ready access to their own encryption and thus the BBC and ITV channels which are currently unscrambled will be scrambled again if they so desire? I only ask because this will affect an awful lot of people abroad who currently watch UK television on cheap satellite boxes and who will be mightily hacked off if they can't watch anymore.
(I realise that everyone who pays a license fee in the UK has every right to be upset with thousands of ex-pats all watching British television without paying for it, but then we do pay for licenses over here to watch really bad tele!)
It's unclear it it means that previously FTA (ie. BBC and ITV) channels will go encrpyted again. That's certainly a possibility, it would save them money when buying programme rights, but even if they do it will be dead easy to get hold of a card so long as you have contacts in the UK.
My guess is that things will stay as they are (FTA) and that C4 and eventually Five will go FTA too. There would be a cost associated with issuing an FTV card and in the past only the BBC has shown an interest in funding that. Sky currently charge 20 quid for a card that's only guaranteed to last for 2 years.
Assuming the platform takes off like Freeview has done, it will mean that channels like the UKTV bundle and the Flextech channels (Bravo, Living etc) could go FTA on satellite using the Freesat EPG. Or they could offer a pay service at lower levels than a Sky sub costs and receivable on a wide range of satellite gear.
I think it's a little optimistic to even consider that some channels will deny themselves SKY revenues in return for a slice of an ever decreasing advertising market after all FTA broadcasting has been an option from day1, nothing has really changed. E4 has only succeeded in their FTA movie thanks to fulltime DTT carriage and well Dsat for all the good will in the world will never be a major UK FTA platform for SD programming.
BY their own admission Freesat is really only aimed at bridging the gap between those that can get Freeview now and those that have to wait until 2012.
The good points are a proper EPG on satellite that isn't tied to SKY and the ability to prove to OFCOM that SKY EPG charges are too high thus saving broadcasters some money (peanuts really in real broadcasting terms) but still significant.
The use of H.264 chipsets which are backwards compatible with mpeg2 means pretty future proof and hopefully a sign of HD commitment from ITV (BBC we know want HD).
The assumption is a fully operational CI slot will be included which could open up some simulcasts of PAY channels after all it's one thing to claim the service will be non-subscription but we know from Freeview that the branded service is piggy backing on the main platform.
Don't forget this is the bbc we're talking about
The same group who made sure freeview boxes couldn't recieve encripted pay channels (something Greg Dyke confirmed here was to keep the tv licence going) plus don't forget all the trouble they gave Top up tv by trying to hide their listings as far out of sight as they could
Original Media Guardian story here (registration required)
Well, the idea of Freeview was that it should be free. ITV digital had already proved what a disaster the idea of getting people to pay for terrestrial TV was and TopUp TV hasn't really shone. In any case the Freeview platform itself has proven to be a huge success, even if TopUp TV hasn't.
With terrestrial, the problem is that there isn't a huge amount of spectrum available and pay channels inevitably lead to less opportunity for the free stations. With satellite, that won't be an issue, plenty of space for pay and free services.
All i can hope is that the flextech and UK channels go FTA becuase thats all i really watch other than the main 5 and sky sports/movies
All I want is Free HD. And the BBC are the best in the business so I believe it is coming!
Another thing this will potentially allow, is for interactive advertising. ITV, c4, all the commercial broadcasters can start to use the features Sky currently do and increase revenue.
So ITV do broadcast at a blinkin low rate...this has been discussed on other parts of these boards but ITV SD is one of the worse channels for viewing experience (and thankfully there's little reason to watch much of this channel anyhow).
Although I've only recently purchased a HD set I really can't justify the extra costs (plus the initial box fee...£299?) for what would amount to (for me at least as I don't subscribe to movies or sport) BBC and Artsworld (a channel I quite like!). so roll on free HD
I'm looking to see the best way of getting HD for my recent Pioneer 507XD purchase...
Any sugestions or good deals out there?
I've looked through some of these threads and see that you can get HD for free..... That's a result.... I really dont want to pay £10 a month to Sky for the privalige as pointed out in other posts...
What are the best options at the moment?
Check other threads - like this one:-
Cheers, Dave C.
I live in a flat with communal dish, and have only 1 cable coming into my flat.
Would you know if in order to use Freesat to its full potential (i.e. with PVR, once launched) I will need 2 cables coming from the LNB box into my flat or would 1 suffice? I am concerned that 1 cable will allow me to see the Freesat channels (including HD channels if and when available) but will not allow me to record programs with the PVR or prevent me from other functionalities.
1 cable means 1 tuner so can can record but cant watch and record at the same time.
Most non-sky receivers can daisy-chain the signal to a sky receiver. Only one of them can control the Hi/Lo band and the H/V, though
Beware only one box can be used at a time unless you turn off lnb power on the second box - otherwise you risk causing severe damage to both boxes with the 13V/18V lnb power from the second box going into the lnb output of the first box..
Freesat sounds cool. Freeview is boring for the younger person like me but becuase i have an isue in that i can't get SKY becuase of a tree blocking the dishes signal, i bet i won't be able to pick up Freesat either.
If you can't get Sky you won't get Freesat either - both are broadcast from the same satellite and all Freesat channels are receivable on a standard Sky box.
so where can I find a list of the freesat chanels available on a sky box, including those if any in HD
Scroll down to the bottom of this webpage to see the significance of the colour coding :
surf this site (you can tailor it by adding your profile)
Chris Muriel, Vienna (back home to Manchester tomorrow)
Lol at the "God" channels.
Hovered on one (American one) for a second or 2, to see some woman reporting from the Middle East and she said "We're on the side of Israel because we're on the side of God". Kinda scary in a way if Middle America swallows this tripe.
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