Join Freesat

Feb 24 2011

In a series of replies received from Channel 5 by readers of joinfreesat (thanks guys/gals), it would appear that Channel 5 have made it very clear that they intend to launch Fiver (called 5* from 7th March) and Five US (called 5 USA from 7th March) on Freesat later this year.

They seem to be suggesting that the only problem standing in their way is the lack of narrow beam capacity on Astra2D (not a Freesat issue), but expect this to be resolved later this year when 1N becomes available.

We suspect given that C4 have found a way around this and intend on launching C4HD on Eurobird (despite the requirement for narrow beam capacity), Channel 5 might follow suit with what ever agreement C4 have with ofcom, so we might see these channels sooner rather than later, but for now it seems later this year is what they are sticking to.

Here is a copy of the reply received by reader astra2d:

Due to a lack of narrow beam capacity, we have been unable to make FIVER (5* from 7th March) and Five USA (5 USA from 7th March) available on this platform since it was launched. However, additional capacity on Freesat is likely to become available later this year and we are planning to make the channels available once this is in place.

We have no specific word on Channel 5 HD, so suspect that might be stuck in a contract with BSkyB for the short term future atleast.

60 Responses to “Channel 5 Hope To Launch Sister Channels Later This Year”

  1. bryan Says:

    go freesat it’s all good news this is going to be a good year for the platform


  2. Jono49 Says:

    this is awsome news. These 2 channels, 4music, viva and dave are the only channels i watch on freeview. thats 2 down and counting amazing


  3. ShaunE Says:

    Just read this on DS, good news!


  4. Brennan Says:

    can,t wait for five usa on freesat been missing this from freeview
    freesat will soon be on par with freeview without the bad signal (well in my aria anyway) cool


  5. gingercol Says:

    just need dave and yesterday then freesat will be the no1 fta platform


  6. avit_now Says:

    Neopotism46 on DS as just pointed out that the ses site list Astra 1N’s orbital position as 19.2E.

    is this a typo? or was this were the sat was oringinally going to be positioned. or will 1N stay until 2F launches?


  7. satom Says:

    Thats very good news – not that I will watch them a lot I think but these are the last popular channels freesat viewers miss atm. No need for the HD or 3D version, SD will do perfectly :-)


  8. satom Says:


    there are very different infos about the positioning of 1N – The 1 in the ID hints to its home at astra 1 ie 19,2E. Then there were infos about a shorttime positioning at 28.2, after that repositioning to 19.2. Admin insists on 1N coming to 28.2 for a longer period – sadly only the sat watch after launch will tell us definitly where ses plans it to go (they seem more interestest in eastern markets than 28 as their handling of 2C show, which rots half empty at 31 …


  9. ian Says:

    Channel5 has had excuses for a while now, and as far as i am concerned, this is the same. Id love to see these channels on Freesat, they have had ample opportunities to get them on Freesat, but cry lack of narrow beam space everytime, when we have seen other channels launch on Freesat, in narrow beam space no problem, so we know that transponders are still free, and Channel5 could of been asking for space to rent or sub lease to get them on!!

    BTW, for anyone who has not looked, Channel4HD is again FTA right now, see the link ——–> for the details at the bottom again provided by satom!


  10. Brian P Says:

    This has got to be very good news for the Freesat platform.


  11. satom Says:


    yep just read the email in the other board … just the same old excuses and announcements the likes of there will be more space coming up and we will look into the matter than again and we of course are committed blahblahblah … don’t believe one single word. They will find new excuses and stay with dollargiving $ky – would be nice to have them on freesat too but not really a great loss if not.

    BTW The sofas are still potatoeing on their couches? No sign of any start preps anyway if I’m not totally mistaken …


  12. philip Says:

    love the service but when,if ,shall we get subtitles on ITV and Ch4?


  13. Expat Says:

    Channel 5 have a new owner, Northern & Shell. They seem to have new ideas for Channel 5, 5* and 5USA. It’s a new chapter for Channel 5, let’s hope they move away from Sky.

    It would be great to see Dave and Yesterday on Freesat, along with 4Music and VIVA.


  14. Dan Says:

    Wicked News!!


  15. satom Says:


    yes but thats almost ancient history by now. Sometime last year RTL sold it to
    Richard Desmond, owner of the Daily Express, OK! magazine and the Portland TV group – home of adult TV channels Television X and Red Hot – via his Northern & Shell.

    And the plans are as it seems and was expected to extend channel 5 to an allday OK! magazine …


  16. satom Says:


    Oh yes nearly forgot: don’t hold your breath for them moving away from $ky – they only recently resumed talks with the BIG BAD M to carry on getting their news broadcast from $ky News.

    (the latter once again awarded best News channel of the year by the Royal Television Society (RTS) for “its bold and brave approach to showing foreign coverage and breaking news” – next time they award fox news for beeing impartial and a model of proper journalism or channel 5 for the most educative channel of the year …)


  17. Rowan Says:

    Got freesat today. Great news :) Here’s hoping the picture quality is really good on Freesat.


  18. ian Says:

    Channel5 love the $$$y money, even though it has to be virtually sod all, as the channels are FTV, so what they gain from $$$ky then will make back easily in becoming FTA and the additional reach being on Freesat will give them. But i am sure the decision makers are are on crack as they are blind to see this!
    I will believe 5* and 5USA are coming to Freesat when i see the channels on my EPG and im able to watch…. something!!


  19. Al (Original) Says:

    Great news.

    Truly puts the Freesat channel line up there with Freeview and from here onwards it can only surpass it.

    We’ve been waiting a long time to see all the major channels mirrored onto Freesat and now with the exception of Dave (which is relatively minor in major channels terms), it seems its happening.

    All we need now is for the CBS HD channels to join and the BBC to improve their HD transmission quality and Freesat is well on its way to being a stand alone platform.


  20. Richard Crichton Says:

    Channel 5 has gone downmarket. Redtop rubbish tv. Bring back the old 5.


  21. Robert H Says:

    I LIKE IT Bring em on all good news


  22. stevip Says:

    can only be good


  23. Tony Says:

    5 are not as luved up to sly as most people think. Since the take over things are moving on pretty quickly & I can see 5hd coming to freesat as soon as there current deal with sly comes to an end. New owners & a brand new direction.. Its all good news!


  24. Richard Crichton Says:

    So when does their current deal with Sly come to an end and what makes you think they would give up a lucrative contract with them to reduce their audience?


  25. steven wallace Says:

    this time last year i was loosing patience with freesat. now i am getting excited about the channels that are arriving.


  26. satom Says:


    a bit out of topic but I wonder, now we’ve got sort of channel 3, channel 4 and fives to come, will channel 6 have a sat backbone as well or some sort of mosaic channel and if so might that come to freesat?


  27. martin Says:

    good one lets hope its sooner rather than leater i got exsited when electric sofa was going to launch on freesat now it appears they are not going to lets hope this is not going in the same direction


  28. Main Says:

    Channel4 might not need to be on a narrowbeam… Its purely speculation that such a thing is required. These are indvidual companies with separate rights contracts. IF BBC & ITV have such deals that prevent them from widebeams doesnt mean channel4 does.

    in terms of 1N and channel5 i asked them about this as soon as the astra website was updated with this info, so finally it’s all good news :)


  29. admin Says:


    This is no doubt the case, we have already confirmed that c4 will broadcast from eurobird initially, so not sure why channel 5 can’t do the same.


  30. Kevin McFarlane Says:

    @25, steven wallace “this time last year i was loosing patience with freesat. now i am getting excited about the channels that are arriving.”

    As I’ve said before Freesat is for those who are prepared to be patient. If you “must have it now” then be prepared to pay for it. :)


  31. monkeymaniac Says:


    Kevin! Spot on, it’s a shame some people live in a got to have it now society, where would the pay platforms be today with out the got to have it now’s. All THE BEST THINGS IN LIFE ARE FOR FREE, accept the bbc licence fee.


  32. Terence Says:

    why do they make such a fuss about narrow beams
    every one i no in france ,spain, germany,holland all get bbc1 & itv perfect, they just have bigger dishes. if they could not pick up these channels they would all come home.
    dont worry about some spainish guy whatching deal or no deal in english, he is not interested .
    only x pats whatch our programmes
    channel 5 HD on freesat should be the law


  33. satom Says:


    the “fuss” about narrow beams is because the european legislaterthought it would not be their job to secure tv without frontiers (borders) for the pan european public but to slice the tv market country wise (with help of switching from analogue which could not be controlled as good as digital) and le the american studio bosses an dslawyers decide which programmes rutoprsn viewers and listeners are allowd to receive (resp. where a EUROPEAN station in EUROPE is allowed by the AMERICANS to broadcast to. So US Studio garbage can only be liscenced for SINGLE COUNTRIES and NOT for EUROPE as such. UK stations have liscences for UK ONLY, and satellite – which was made for crossing borders – has been disabled to cross UK borders by the US liscence holders.

    Some very itelligent and ctreative mind found if the satellite has ha spot or narrow beam, the US studios MIGHT allow the sat broadcast of their materials WITHOUT encryption , providing programmes CAN ONLY BE RECEIVED in the COUNTRY the licences were given for. UNTIL NOW this HAS HAPPENED and WITHOUT THIS FREESAT would be IMPOSSIBLE!

    So $ky and consortes will be very happy for your broadcast to the world that those programmes can not only be received in the UK and will be more that happy to go and tell the US studios to stop that.

    Keep on telling every one where those narrow beams can be revceived. You will make Mr. M a very happy man.


  34. satom Says:

    uhhhh rrrg, soory still fighting with my keyboard

    rutoprsn … should read european


    its not about deal or no deal – its about the deals us studios make with european legislators/broadcasters

    No not only expats watch these programmes and even if so it would not be part of the license


  35. satom Says:

    and another afterthought:

    YES the uk broadcasters COULD buy the rights for t5he complete sat footprint but they WOULD HAVE TO BUY RIGHTS FOR EVERY COUNTRY IN THE FOOTPRINT and that would be commercial suicide (massive liscence costs but advertisers only pay for viewers “counted” by the audience figure agencies)

    It would have been european legislators job to stand up against the US politicians and studio bosses and allow only paneuropan sat licences

    or the base the licence on the vievers numbers used to make up the price for commercials – so pay for real viewers /including expats) which they are paid for by their advertisers. That would have been another useful combination.


  36. ian Says:

    Don’t drink and text.. and as demonstrated by @satom.. don’t have cheeky vimto and type! :-)


  37. satom Says:

    seems my keyboard wants to add

    Shlurple the Purple

    (no matter what I try to type … no idea what thats supposed to mean …)


  38. Al (Original) Says:

    @ Monkeymaniac, you seem to foget that the 1st adopters of Freesat have been waiting 3 years. That’s hardly a lack of patience.

    However, the news is good news.


  39. Tony Says:

    @ 24 Richard..
    I am not exactly sure when the 5hd deal comes to an end…From what I have gathered from various sources & read on websites the news seems very promising that 5hd will eventually be available on Freesat. I don’t quite understand why you think their “lucrative” deal with sly is so special. If this was the case why have 4hd gone free? 5 will not lose an audience when they eventually go free. It will still be available on Sly as well as most other platforms if anything their audience figures will rise ! by about 1.7m or whatever the the latest freesat figures are..


  40. Richard Crichton Says:

    @39 Tony
    4 is a PSB subsidised by the tax payer so should never have been part of a pay package in the first place. 5 is a commercial operation so restricting their HD to Sly as ITV have done with ITV HD 2,3 and 4 makes more sense for them than being FTA. Why do you think ITV have gone with Sly if it is not more lucrative for them than being FTA?


  41. Tony Says:

    @ 40 Richard ,
    I see your point about “lucrative” as in yes a nice little earner but my point was that they would not suffer from audience figures , they will increase as for being on freesat not decrease. Yes , money is a big factor , and you are right about itv 2,3,4 etc but Freesats sd versions of these channels are very good anyway. Even though hd doesn’t bother me as much as it does with some people I still think will be a welcomed member to the HD community. I guess we will all have to wait & see…


  42. David Says:

    I saw this at the top of the page,

    “Channel 5 have made it very clear that they intend to launch Fiver (called 5* from 7th March) and Five US (called 5 USA from 7th March) on Freesat later this year”.

    Does this mean 5* and 5 USA are being launched on Freesat on the 7th March or later this year, I hope it’s the 7th March.


  43. satom Says:

    No it just means that Five now is rerenamed to channel 5 and its sister channels are accordingly changed to 5er and 5 USA as of 7th march

    For the rest please don’t just read apart of the headline or first lines but the threat before asking questions which are answered in the thread more than once

    (and sky one and sky sports and dave WILL NOT join freesat …)


  44. Odddavey Says:

    #42 David No your reading it wrong, later this year. I thought it was the 7th March when I read it first.


  45. swjoduk Says:

    Can anyone answer this question?

    If I can get the likes of Lava and other Sky FTV channels on my old sky box through the same dish I receive my Freesat signal, will I be able to receive Channel 4HD when it joins Freesat.


  46. satom Says:


    ftb I think no one can answer that 100% – it depends on what specific details C4 has made a deal with ofcom to be able to broadcast via eurobird. If it includes specific SR or FEC (transmission parameters for digital channels) your sky box might not be able to cope.

    But when the new satellite will be operational at 28E and C4HD switches to that bird on a small beam, you will be able to receive it like BBC One HD.

    Maybe admin knows more by now.


  47. David Says:

    @satom #43, sorry I didn’t realise you were from admin, I will read it all properly next time!


  48. satom Says:


    I am not – and I know it is an art on the brink of extinction, but reading carefully sometimes might help to understand … since everything is explained above …


  49. David Says:

    @satom, I only asked a question, there’s no need to be sarcastic, won’t be asking questions anymore, thanks for your understanding.


  50. satom Says:


    wasn’t sarcastic only realistic … reading more than mobile shorthand seems to become unusual and reading and comprehending more than one complete sentence nearly impossible … evrything has to be high speed …

    so sorry no offence meant but lots of people keep asking questions already answered more than once (fe when will dave, sky sports or some other pay-tv channels come to freesat). Asking questions is good but first getting all the available info should be the first step, not the second or neglected at all.


  51. swjoduk Says:

    @ 46, Satom I was using my sky box as an example that I can get Lava and other FTA Eurobird channels on there.

    For Freesat HD I have a Bravia tv with built in Freesat


  52. David Says:

    @satom, I don’t do mobile shorthand, and I don’t do things like ‘LOL’, as I said before I only asked a question, and I did read everything as I always do, I just misunderstood.


  53. satom Says:


    sorry … misunderstood … lava is afak a FTA channel, so available on every FTA box with a dish aligned to receive astra2/eurobird 1.

    So if you get the like of horror channel, cbs action or Controversial tv (from eurobird) with equal reception quality as the astra 2(d) channels like ITV/BBC/C4/C5 AND you get BBC One HD, BBC HD or ITV/STV HD I can’t see why you should’t get C4HD.

    (Have a look at the frequency lists at flysat, lyngsat or kingofsat if you are in doubt which satellite they are broadcasting from)

    If I got it wrong again don’t hesitate to ask again, maybe some sunny day even I might get it right 😉


  54. satom Says:


    again, sorry

    (but I hope I answered your question with my first post)


  55. David Says:

    @satom, no problem, all’s well that ends well :-)


  56. swjoduk Says:

    @ 53 I can receive Horror and CBS Action and Reality on my Freesat TV so hopefully I will get C4HD.

    We shall see come April 1st


  57. Stephen Ellerington Says:

    I emailed FIVE regarding FIVE HD on Freesat and got the following reply:

    ” At present we are unable to broadcast in HD on Freesat or Freeview. Due to a lack of narrow beam capacity (essentially the section of the Freesat satellite that only covers the UK), we are currently unable to make Five HD (or indeed FIVER and Five USA) available on Freesat.”

    So a lack of narrow beam capacity prevents FIVE being broadcast in HD on Freesat?


  58. satom Says:

    yea and there are no added preservatives or colors … yadayadayada …


  59. Mediaman Says:

    It’s great news that 5HD could launch soon. I have heard through contacts that NHK plans to launch a HD channel exclusively on Freesat and was wondering if anyone here has heard anything. Sorry it is off topic a little but it goes to show how serious Freesat is being seen by broadcasters and how channel information seems to be moving faster than a few years ago. I have had Freesat since the early days and it’s a decision I have never regretted.


  60. Sep Says:

    Cracking news – c’Mon C5!


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