Changes to Freeview (with a techie edge)

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  • There is less room on them now they are operating as a SFN. I would have thought that the only time they got close to full capacity would have been when they were being used for BBC Red Button streams. As far as closure goes, Arqiva will probably want to hang onto them as long as possible, they don't seem over keen on converting their main multiplexes to DVB-T2.

    No commercial operator will want to switch to DVB-T2 until the main channels want to as they don't want to lose viewers. So once BBC/ITV are ready. All the remaining DVB-T will probably switchover "at once" (i.e. in stages over a matter of days) like Digital Switchover.


    All my opinion though. 8o

  • And just as that happens, a new standard will come along.


    Regarding the donations to Together, seems like a PR exercise to me, but if the media companies are genuine about having a proper community ch, then I'm all for it.

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  • As I said though, PBS America has launched a +1 where they didn't have one on other platforms, just like Together TV did, and PBS America isn't funded by donations like Together TV is.

    Sure but my comment was following up from the original question:

    Why on earth would there be a Together +1, unless whoever owns the channels plans on using the slot for a new channel.

  • No commercial operator will want to switch to DVB-T2 until the main channels want to as they don't want to lose viewers. So once BBC/ITV are ready. All the remaining DVB-T will probably switchover "at once" (i.e. in stages over a matter of days) like Digital Switchover.


    All my opinion though. 8o

    Or has the possibility of a DVB-T2 switchover disappeared with 700 MHz clearance? It wasn't made mandatory, so the state avoided the costs of replacing DVB-T equipment. Converting BBC/ITV channels would leave a significant number of viewers without services. A solution would perhaps be to convert one PSB multiplex and leave the other as DVB-T but that would need a change to the multiplex licences. The other option is to wait until DVB-T is replaced as consumer equipment reaches the end of its useful life. By that time the future of terrestrial broadcasting as a whole will be in doubt.

  • And just as that happens, a new standard will come along.


    Regarding the donations to Together, seems like a PR exercise to me, but if the media companies are genuine about having a proper community ch, then I'm all for it.

    DVB-I but it is already around.


    PR or just using up spare capacity that is there anyway and getting tax relief on charitable donations..

  • There is less room on them now they are operating as a SFN. I would have thought that the only time they got close to full capacity would have been when they were being used for BBC Red Button streams. As far as closure goes, Arqiva will probably want to hang onto them as long as possible, they don't seem over keen on converting their main multiplexes to DVB-T2.

    I remember reading an articke where Arqiva actually urged the Government to bring forward 700 MHZ clearance! I thought this was odd, but it was suggested that they wanted the extra capacity to go to mobile phone networks ASAP, as this would be more profitable for them.

  • I've seen the Arqiva Test Channel before. It's been around for ages. I only just noticed it's on SDN though, which is a little strange. I know Arqiva have something to do with all the multiplexes, but I'd always assumed the Test Channel was on ARQA or ARQB.

  • I've seen the Arqiva Test Channel before. It's been around for ages. I only just noticed it's on SDN though, which is a little strange. I know Arqiva have something to do with all the multiplexes, but I'd always assumed the Test Channel was on ARQA or ARQB.

    I could try to explain this, although the context would be that things have changed a lot since I was regularly involved with DTT analysis.


    Basically it seems that there are currently 2 data carousels on SDN. PID 6648 carries the data traditionally associated with SDN, including their MHEG-IC slates / menus. PID 6441 carries the Arqiva MHEG-IC data for the Arqiva Test Channel, Sonlife & Racing TV, which used to be carried on ARQ-B.


    There's still quite a lot of MHEG-IC channels around, bearing in mind that MHEG support is gradually being phased out of the Freeview spec.

  • A516Digital has seen reports on Shopping TV forums (yes, there apparently is such a thing) that Sewing Quarter is going to close.

    https://twitter.com/a516digit...39668593991681

    They are 8am to 1pm on the Freeview stream that PBS America has just moved onto. If PBS America knew, maybe they have already arranged to take this space when it is vacated when they struck their deal for the 1pm to 11pm slot.

    Alternatively another temp mux channel may decide a morning slot on a main multiplex is better than an uncertain DTT future on a temporary multiplex with less coverage.

    There is actually space from 5am to 8am on this stream, so whoever gets later morning slot could take this up too. This 3 hour space seems to act as a padding between Adult channels ending and others taking over currently. There is a similar (but not same length) padding on some other streams that share with Adult channels.

    See timesharing on multiplexes here http://www.xhxf.uk/timeshares/

  • Oh yes, there are indeed Shopping TV forums. :rolleyes:


    Adult channel forums too for that matter, every little niche is covered...


    That timesharing site isn't always accurate, so take anything you see on there with a pinch of salt.

  • Oh yes, there are indeed Shopping TV forums. :rolleyes:


    Adult channel forums too for that matter, every little niche is covered...


    That timesharing site isn't always accurate, so take anything you see on there with a pinch of salt.

    I always take all sources with a little bit of doubt, as none are infallible. I try to look for multiple sources, if possible. Though on certain subjects where I have no expertise/relevant knowledge it's difficult is tell.

  • Well here's a change you'll never have predicted...

    According to RXTVlog, religious channel TBN UK has said it is moving to the main Freeview HD multiplex PSB3, the one More4+1 just moved from.


    So much for the predicted CBeebiesHD/BBC4 HD! ^^

  • And here is a tweet about it from TBN UK.

  • Well here's a change you'll never have predicted...

    According to RXTVlog, religious channel TBN UK has said it is moving to the main Freeview HD multiplex PSB3, the one More4+1 just moved from.


    So much for the predicted CBeebiesHD/BBC4 HD! ^^

    Not a good use of PSB mux capacity, although I think it has previously been used for the pay tv Sports streams during switchover, which was even worse...

  • And the "unexpected Freeview happenings" theme continues...


    TJC HD. Thanks to @ukdtt on Twitter for the information.


  • And the "unexpected Freeview happenings" theme continues...


    TJC HD. Thanks to @ukdtt on Twitter for the information.


    I'm not so sure that was unexpected, there have been "whispers". Chrisy is really on the ball with that type of info.

  • Well here's a change you'll never have predicted...

    According to RXTVlog, religious channel TBN UK has said it is moving to the main Freeview HD multiplex PSB3, the one More4+1 just moved from.

    God likes money.;)

    So much for the predicted CBeebiesHD/BBC4 HD!

    What, were they meant to be going 24hour or something?

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  • What, were they meant to be going 24hour or something?

    No. Many people, including me, thought when More4+1 left the PSB HD multiplex it was because the tech people had finally managed to figure out a solution as to how to fit another HD stream onto that multiplex.


    And the most obvious candidate for taking it was the CBeebiesHD/BBC4 HD timeshare that is currently on a temporary HD multiplex.


    Given the 2 temporary HD multiplexes aren't going to be around for much longer it needs to find a home.

  • To be fair, they probably could fit another HD stream onto BBC B but the BBC are probably resisting it because of the picture quality hit. Fitting BBC News HD onto there as well would be a problem.

  • To be fair, they probably could fit another HD stream onto BBC B but the BBC are probably resisting it because of the picture quality hit. Fitting BBC News HD onto there as well would be a problem.

    I don't think most people would be that bothered if BBC News HD missed the temporary multiplex switchoff. CBeebies on the other hand is a very popular channel.

  • Does anyone know if UKTV or Freeview as a whole has any spare (long term) capacity to add Yesterday +1 and Drama +?


    I ask because I think that there is a good chance that these channels (along with Dave Ja Vu) will be going FTA on satellite and joining Freesat in a week or two. However, UKTV do like to get any of their FTA channels onto the most popular platform (Freeview) first for the increased eyeballs/ad revenue before making them FTA on satellite.

  • Assuming I've not got mixed up, there are currently two full streams on a permanent multiplex up for grabs. The one E4+1 just moved off and the one TBN UK is about to move off.


    The trend is for those non-+1s on the temporary multiplexes to try to get a permanent slot (Together TV, PBS America), so Smithsonian Channel, Freesports and Forces TV are the obvious candidates.


    I think UKTV are more likely to finally do something about Eden, make it FTA, maybe rebrand it. And I think it's more likely they'd use Dave Ja Vu's Freeview slot to do it.

  • Assuming I've not got mixed up, there are currently two full streams on a permanent multiplex up for grabs. The one E4+1 just moved off and the one TBN UK is about to move off.


    The trend is for those non-+1s on the temporary multiplexes to try to get a permanent slot (Together TV, PBS America), so Smithsonian Channel, Freesports and Forces TV are the obvious candidates.


    I think UKTV are more likely to finally do something about Eden, make it FTA, maybe rebrand it. And I think it's more likely they'd use Dave Ja Vu's Freeview slot to do it.

    Thanks. I think the fact that there's at least three other channels who potentially want the two spare slots will push the price up then, whilst UKTV won't want to pay too much for any of their timeshift channels. Maybe UKTV are more interested in getting their parent FTA channels ònto Freeview, but aren't too bothered about their +1's.


    If this is the case and Eden were to go FTA, it would be inevitable that they'd remove Dave Ja Vu to get Eden onto DTT.


    A bit of background- On satellite, they are currently in the process of moving Drama+1, Yesterday +1 and Dave Ja Vu onto a UK spotbeam.


    Drama +1 is FTA anyway, Yesterday +1 is FTV (so UKTV could cut costs by switching off the encryption) and Dave Ja Vu is a pay TV channel.


    On 8/12/19 it will be four years since Yesterday, Really & Drama went FTA on satellite. My thinking is that as part of the agreement to break free from Sky, it was agreed to keep the +1's encrypted and that this contractual agreement would appear to be coming to an end after 4 years.


    Perhaps the plan is to put Eden on Freeview and make up for the loss of Dave Ja Vu and Yesterday +1 (which I believe was on DTT, but had to be removed for some reason) viewers via increased exposure on satellite by going FTA and joining Freesat.


    This would also improve the Freesat offering at essentially no extra cost to the BBC.

  • I was thinking about it again after I posted and I think it's also possible Eden might be closed. Yesterday shows nature programming these days so it would reduce UKTV's costs. UKTV have been talking about increasing their original programming, it could go towards that. Also they don't have HD versions of Drama and Yesterday, one or both could be launched with savings from closing Eden.

  • Dave Ja Vu, even as a +1, has traditionally had reasonable viewing figures, so may bring in more advertising revenue than Eden.

  • I was thinking about it again after I posted and I think it's also possible Eden might be closed. Yesterday shows nature programming these days so it would reduce UKTV's costs. UKTV have been talking about increasing their original programming, it could go towards that. Also they don't have HD versions of Drama and Yesterday, one or both could be launched with savings from closing Eden.

    Well, Eden HD was closed on Sky, so maybe You're right.