Free Satellite TV for the UK


Here in the UK there are 5 analogue terrestrial channels available free (erm, apart from the license fee) to everyone (BBC1, BBC2, ITV, Ch. 4, Ch. 5) through a normal television. Then along came News Corp. and BSKYB who launched PayTV, subscription satellite broadcasting (loads of channels including the BBC stable, CNN, Sky's own channels, CNN etc.) for which folk pay somewhere between 10 and 40 pounds or so a month depending on the configuration of sport and movie channels subscribed to. Then two of the ITV franchises launched ITV digital which went bust but the platform of digital terrestrial was taken over by the BBC, Crown Castle International and BSkyB with Freeview. Freeview offers about 30 channels for a one off charge of around 60 pounds for a set-top box, no subscription. Freeview's channel line up is limited though, especially through not carrying Channel 4's E4 for late night Secret Life of Us fans. So now BSkyB will offer for a one off charge of 150 or so, a satellite dish, receiver set top box along with some 200 channels.

Sky's free channels will include the five terrestrial channels, BBC digital channels such as BBC Three, BBC Four, CBeebies, CBBC and News 24, as well Sky News, the ITV News Channel and CNN. It also includes more esoteric stations like the God Channel and Exchange & Mart TV. But it doesn't include ITV2, E4 or those satellite channels which are part of a Sky subscription package.
The switch off of analogue is pencilled in for 2010, will BSkyB's new offering bring the government any closer to achieving it? Oh yeah and there are the cable people too, if they bother to return your phone calls.

Posted by Paul in Television Tech at June 10, 2004 03:17 AM