Join Freesat

Aug 03 2010

With the announcement made today that ITV intend on launching their ITV2, 3 and 4 high-definition service on Sky only, you’ve got to question how much involvement ITV really have, or want, in this Freesat joint venture agreement with BBC.

Many of you will be aware that ITV have been close to financial ruin in recent years, with a £105mil loss last year alone, so you can excuse them a little for wanting to take the option which will see the biggest return, but judging by the number of emails we’ve received today, this is seen as a clear sign that ITV are turning their back on free-to-air (FTA) satellite television and as such, their own joint venture platform.

ITV have said that whilst they plan to offer ITV2 HD, ITV3 HD and ITV4 HD as part of Sky’s HD pack (£10 per month on top of £18-£48 per month), their standard-definition versions will continue to be available FTA, along with ITV1 (SD) and ITV1 HD.

If you’ve not read the full story, it is availale on the BBC News website here.

What are your thoughts on the news, do you see this as a kick in the teeth for Freesat, or that ITV’s programming is so poor in terms of content and quality that this makes no difference to you other than the obvious additional exposure for Freesat. One things for sure, the team at Freesat are no doubt unhappy with this announcement!

On better news (depending how you look at it), ITV do intend on launching ITV1+1 at the beginning of 2011, and this should be FTA.

246 Responses to “ITV Turn Their Back On Freesat?”

  1. Saltydawg Says:

    What a kick in the teeth for Freesat Now the Sky have just released its figures too & have announced exclusive content from HBO & other high end producers, no other TV companies will be able to compete with Sky. Why would anyone bother to want to join the freesat platform now?


  2. footy Says:

    Thin end of the wedge!!! We were promided so much, but like politicions they just lie!


  3. Martin Says:

    Does ITV believe that this will make them a lot of money? Who actually wants to see their 2nd, 3rd and 4th channels in HD? The majority of the programmes will probably only be upscaled HD qulaity.


  4. Iain.d Says:

    I doubt if the exposure these channels will get via the HD platform will add much to the coffers of ITV. I certainly don’t think the programming on the channels will take business away from other HD source channels on Sky. Personally I think it’s ITV clutching at straws.


  5. emsquared Says:

    Whilst I’m one of those that thinks “content, what content?” with regard to ITV in general I can see how potential purchasers of Freesat could be deterred by the minimal HD offerings available for free.If someone as lame content wise as ITV are seen to leave behind FTA then it certainly has the potential to set the trend for many more channels to exit also.


  6. Len Says:

    I find the announcement from ITV that it is getting into bed with Sky as incomprehensible. Since the announcement this-morning I have been waiting for a further announcement from Freesat saying that these channels would also be part of the new Freesat Pay-to View channels, which we were discussing a week or two ago, but it looks unlikely that this is now going to happen.
    This is a very sad day for Freesat.


  7. JayW Says:

    It is unfortunate, but nothing more. ITV cannot even begin to fill ITV1 HD with true HD programmes, so how much HD will be on 2,3 or 4. Very little i guess. However it looks good for SKY sales to have channels available as HD even if they really are not.

    I must say that I am delighted with the BBC & ITV HD progs on Freesat (and more when BBC1 goes HD) and like many I wish that Freesat could get more to join. However, no matter what Murdoch does I will not pay his exorbitant costs, now or in the future.


  8. Tony Says:

    Lets just remember what Adam Crozier has done in the past…..

    1. Did a fantastic job at the FA….. I think not….
    2. Did an even better job at Royal Mail…… well maybe not..
    3. Is now taking ITV into pay tv….

    This guys on a hatrick of disasters …Good luck with the future mate .
    Lets hope Sky take him on next.

    Freesat had such a great chance of giving sky a good run…

    Just waiting for Emma Scott to announce Pay Tv to finish off the platform.
    I was going to buy 2 more freesat recievers for the kids. I have just changed my mind & I hope other people will too!


  9. James Says:

    It’s a shame, but I would only consider paying if ITV(1) HD went pay only. I sometimes watch the other ITV channels, but not enough to pay for their HD versions.


  10. dan Says:

    It’s a cying shame they’re still not broadcasting 5.1 DD on ITV1!! As for the other ITV channels in HD, let’s face it there’s bugger all on them worthy of upscalling which is surly all they’re going to do.


  11. Froggie Says:

    A great shame, but as long as we don’t lose ITV1HD. Like most people, I was hoping for more HD channels by now and its disappointing that it hasn’t happened, but Freesat does enable me to have UK TV when SKY is the only other option over here in France, so I’m just thankful for whatever I can get.


  12. Wouter Says:

    The main problem is not that ITV2/3/4 HD will go to Sky for me, but that Freesat is not making any efforts to add extra content, HD preferably.

    The freesat platform has not seen any new content (ignoring some mediocre shopping channels) over the last 6-12 months, while Sky/Virgin/BT are constantly expanding with more content, and more HD content.

    I am more and more believing Freesat is about die a slow death. If Sky was not such a rip-off, I would have gone sky, but Sky is taking the p*$$ with its monthly fees due to lack of serious competition.

    I guess the only option for Freesat to survive is the support of the premium model, paying say £5 or £10 a month for some extra (sky) content. If only Freesat would rush to clarify their efforts…


  13. admin Says:


    Freesat really do have their hands tied when it comes to HD content, or any content for that matter. They do have a policy and approach to marketing the platform, but ultimately it comes down to money in this industry, and when the likes of Sky can offer incredibly sweetners to broadcasters like ITV, how can Freesat, a not-for-profit organisation compete.


  14. Wouter Says:

    I hear what you say, but if freesat would not improve, and remain stuck at a limited user base (whatever that # would be), the question becomes valid if this service still adds enough value for its running cost, or not?

    Although they are not-for-profit, they do charge channels for the EPG and are not willing to add channels that will not pay for this EPG (eg. Luxe TV and Luxe HD, that don’t even have a scheduled program).

    I understand it is difficult to compete with Sky, but I do think Freesat can improve within their boundaries of money, bandwidth, etc.


  15. Ekol Says:

    Why do so many think that freesat should compete with $ky? freesat is first and foremost a complimentary service to freeview, for those who had bad or no reception.

    Satellite transponder space cost money and the higher the bandwidth the greater the cost. These channels probably couldn’t exist without subscription as ITV (advertisers) wouldn’t pay for carriage. Same for fiveHD and Channel 4HD.

    Freeview might be worth paying carriage for, because the potential audience and advertising revenue is so much larger.

    So freesat will always lag behind until the audience figures reach a critical mass and the carriage gets cheaper. It’s simple economics.

    I don’t care; my preference is for good drama, documentaries and some sport and the current line-up serves me fine. I don’t need to count channels, just the programmes that are actually worth watching, and very little is on ITV2,3,4 or Ch4 or five. Film4 in HD would be nice, though.


  16. admin Says:


    Freesat would be in breach of their EPG license if they allowed channels to launch without charge, but even if they could, £30k isn’t going to interest those with the money to produce HD channels when Sky are likely to be offering them 7 figure amounts and a percentage of HD pack revenue.


  17. aybeeseaa Says:

    If the content of the channels described above could possibly be worth watching in “HD” and hence regarded as a true “loss” to any other platform then there could be a meaningful discussion.

    How could anyone otherwise care?

    And please… NO +1s.



  18. Peter Says:

    I purchased my freesat box precisely because I have no wish to pay the Dirty Digger a penny. So I have no intention of throwing money away on channel consisting mostly of upscaled SD.

    With their current ITV1 HD offerings, nobody is going to purchase the Sky HD pack specifically to get their offshoots. Some may go for their tits and motors Men’s Channel but I would have thought that internet porn and Top Gear provides quite enough stimulation free.


  19. Chrislayeruk Says:

    The Only Thing I ever watch on ITV3 is Poirot…..and I own all the DVD’s.
    So, will I miss it in HD? it wont be HD, it will be upscaled and I do that at home now.
    So, no change, I hardle ever watch Itv other than poirot itv3,
    ITV have to make a profit, they think this will do it, and maybe it will but most people I know will only take subsciptions on a long term basis for sport.

    There must be alot of churn in the subscriptions and maybe this is a tactic to hold onto people beyond the finish of their first contract period.

    I for one will never subscibe to Pay TV beyond the BBC License, which is a bargain.
    Thoughts, Chris.:)


  20. aybeeseaa Says:

    If there were quality content then there could be less of a discussion and more food for thought.

    As it is I, for one, do NOT want to watch an upscaled version of legal claims commercials.

    Actually not in any “scale”.

    This is a no-brainer designed for those with no brains.



  21. DIB Says:

    More HD channels would be nice but I really don’t care about missing itv2,3,4 in hd because I never watch them anyway, they are rubbish. Oh and the +1 channels are a waste of time in my opinion as well.


  22. Robert Hill Says:

    all i can say, itv can send itv 2-4 to sky i personally dont watch itv 1 either. they show nothing worth watching until the xfactor and britains got talent are on ,so if sky want to subsidise itv buisness good for itv, for them to stay afloat hopefully that will keep murdoch’s hands’ off teresterial tv.


  23. Chazzer Says:

    It is unfortunate that a UK based FTA provider like ITV has done a deal with $ky, but given C4 HD & 5 HD have already set the precedent, it’s hardly surprising. However, whilst C4 & 5 have struggled financially in the last year or so, hence such survival tactics are understandable (we would all, I’m sure rather have channels 4 and 5 than neither of them), I believe ITV are trumpeting a £97m profit this year against their £110m loss last year. So why now ITV eh?

    Whilst $ky have also now gobbled up HBOs content & are trumpeting that fact too, they are also “bigging up” their investment in new programming. Which is what exactly? Would it sustain a whole channel on its own? I think not.

    Their target (& the mandarins in No. 10) continues to be the BBC licence fee, which as far as I can see, is the only UK based FTA provider with 4+ channels of ORIGINAL programming, not to mention countless radio stations.

    Freesat is a joint venture between the UK based FTA broadcasters, lord knows what the t&c’s are between them, but it needs to continue, & we need to get behind it, so if it needs pay channels to continue, so be it (not what I voted for either).

    Otherwise, in a few short years, with the licence fee abolished (it’s sadly only a matter of when) there will be no FTA anything…..


  24. Michael from Bath Says:

    It continues to annoy me when people describe commercial television such as ITV as ‘Free’. We have already paid for the content they dish out everytime we buy something, be it food, clothes,toiletries etc;in the purchase price. Why should we pay twice and give Sky a cut. Just vote with your feet and boycott it. It’s the same with the criticism over the BBC’s websites,news service and IPlayer, we already pay for it through the license fee so it’s it bit rich for the Murdochs to continually criticise it!


  25. Soul4real Says:

    ITV player was promised early this summer, the last time i looked outside it looks like winter is drawing in, I say a promise is a comfort to a fool.


  26. andybell Says:

    This is very bad news for Freesat I’m afraid.

    The best hope for Freesat – outside the areas that will never get the full Freeview service – was that it would be able to offer a good range of FTA HD channels, more than the four or five which Freeview will be restricted to for a long time to come.

    With ITV2, ITV3, ITV4, E4 and Film 4 all going on pay platforms – while C4 and five hide behind encryption – it isn’t looking promising. Indeed, with C4 HD on Freeview I can imagine Freeview HD starting to take off once the prices start to come down and coverage extends.

    On a more positive note, at least there will soon be BBC1 HD. And I can imagine a full suite of BBC channels in the medium term. Obviously they will have to be FTA.


  27. barrie Says:

    I think losing ITV4 in HD is a blow. Its been slowly developing into a niche sporting channel with the India Premier League and Tour de France for example.


  28. Alan G Says:

    As far as I’m aware, BBC One HD is due to appear on Freesat this Autumn. That alone will be preferable to HD versions of the ITV repeat channels. I agree with Martin @3 that the majority of programmes will only be upscaled anyway.


  29. Zach_Manchester Says:

    Boo hoo hoo. Personally, I haven’t really seen much commitment from ITV anyhow. And nor do I care. I haven’t seen anything of any interest on any of the ITV channels for a long time. And as an experiment, I turned over to ITV HD (I also held my nose whilst doing so) and what I saw was upscaled tripe. When a show came on that was in HD, I had to turn it off as I can’t abide the sort of “entertainment” that is belched and farted out by ITV.

    So, let them go and good riddance.


  30. Fitzy Says:

    I wish i had waited until freeview HD was rolled out, rather than forking out for a fresatHD box, seems i would get more HD content, & would have a platform that was guarantied to last.

    At presant i feel robbed, no i dont watch itv,2,3,or 4 much, apart from the Tour De France & the odd football match both on itv4.
    But we were promised so much on freesat, can you remember 200 channels!
    I would love this format to move forward but unless we get some more quality HD channels to join us pretty soon, i see no reason why anyone would invest in freesatHD as aposed to freeview HD.


  31. David Says:

    I have yet to watch one programme on any of these channels so won’t miss them being in HD.


  32. aybeeseaa Says:

    A lot of common sense (apart from the sport!!) on this thread so far.

    Did we NOT see it “coming” regarding QUALITY HD on Freesat (actually anywhere else TBH)?

    I won’t do the “told ya so” bit just yet.



  33. stingeyal Says:

    i wouldnt b surprised if within 3yrs $ky buys freesat and all our problems vanish wewve all bought old sky hd boxes, and need to pay out for cam cards


  34. EddieH Says:

    Not good news to see the HD versions of ITV’s portfolio other than ITV1 disappear behind the £ky curtain-remember off course that everything on those channels is a repeat anyway!

    We on Freesat retain the SD versions something at least,

    ITV need the money and £ky have some to give away. A very clever marketing scheme by £ky which they have been pursuing for some time now. Make HD something very special encrypt it so your own subscribers cannot watch it except when they pay the extra £10! Now £ky have decided even if a £ky subscriber pays the £10 for HD they can only watch whatever HD is transmitted by stations in their bundle, so if they want more HD they must take additional bundles – more revenue!

    HD is a natural progression in tranmission standards, now that there are Televisions capable of displaying HD.
    Remember 405 lines to 625 lines – progression.

    Freesat will live on and do what it is designed to do – provide coverage within freeview black spots. BBC have accepted that HD is now the standard and after BBC1 HD i expect to see BBC2 HD BBC3 HD and BBC4 HD it all takes but a little time, all we need is a little patience. Eventually i expect all television stations to transmit as standard in HD, although for a few years all those old favourites will just be upscaled SD :)


  35. aybeeseaa Says:

    I’d be very surprised if many can understand that.



  36. Jerry Says:

    ITV moving into pay TV means that I will be turning my back on ITV. FTA services in the UK (notwithstanding the TV License) are an institution envied around the world, and have to date produced some of the best TV programming, also envied overseas. I have avoided SKY, to avoid Murdoch’s monopoly and FreeSat for me was very welcome alternative to terrestrial transmission. So ITV’s viewing share will, in my opinion, shrink further with such a move.


  37. Soul4real Says:

    I noticed most of you voted not to have the option to use the cam card, it was not compulsory, you did’nt have to use it but you said no! today topup tv said they will now be showing sky sports 1&2 so the free in freeview can have that choice but us freesaters most fight for the course free means free and that final! There maybe the one time we may want to watch something pay per view and we can use that option for a one month topup and the next 11 months go free, and we say no! i also read today itv will be charging for some content on Project Canvass, thats going to be on freesat, i don’t like subscription tv as much as you guys but we must encourage freesat to go forward with the rest of the platforms, do you think satellite is going to stay here for ever, look at iptv freesat is already moving ahead with that if itv player was on-board it would have been a greater selling point than just BBCHD and ITVHD which three other platforms have already


  38. momalley Says:

    oh well i was critisized by some members when i said a year ago it
    looked like freesat was doomed,, it is just about there now
    as hd content goes its hopeless and i dont see it improving either,
    i bought a hd pvr and ordinary freesat boxes i also recomended to two friends
    who also bought freesat pvrs , i now feel bad for giving them some wrong advice
    as i thought freesat would provide lots more hd content lol, the latest its now
    called freesh— by my mates.


  39. Viking272 Says:

    Whilst on the surface it seems bad news I personally don’t mind.
    It does mean more HD content it out there, that the norm is going to be HD and that has to be a good thing as more channels will filter in time to Freesat.
    There’s minimal content on ITV2,3,4 that people watch and they average 200k-500k viewing figures. I think there would be a much bigger furore if the BBC announced their HD channel(s) exclusively to $ky.


  40. Billy Darragh Says:

    Could this be another BSB saga, will we be left with usless boxes again.


  41. aybeeseaa Says:

    Ahhhh… Betamax and BSB – now you’re talking.

    I got it RIGHT again!



  42. aybeesea Says:

    Betamax and BSB – now you’re talking.

    I got it RIGHT again!



  43. aybeesea Says:

    Many apologies for the “triple” post.

    System issues (possibly my brain)



  44. Al Catraz Says:

    I only watch ITV4 when the touring cars is on, otherwise none of them are worth the trouble. At least they’re staying in SD format on freesat – that was under some threat a while ago I recall reading on this site.
    As for ITV+1, will it be in HD?

    I’ve enjoyed the world cup for free in HD which is one of the reasons I bought the box in the first place (my area doesn’t go digital til 2012), and existing HD content on the beeb is pretty good (but isn’t it time to dump the “preview” all day and put some decent programming out?).
    By 2012, I will have a choice to make – stick with freesat or revert to freeview – hopefully freesat will have made some advances by then to persuade me to stick with it.
    Whatever happens, murdoch will never see a penny of my money!


  45. aybeesea Says:

    A balanced view



  46. Brian_Damage Says:

    I wonder how much of this is to do with satellite capacity? If ITV can’t get enough UK only bandwidth (because Sky have grabbed it all !) they may not have any choice in the matter. At least for now, anyway.

    As for the content: ITV 3 & 4 show lots of old classic TV, much of which was made on film. This could actually look quite good in HD.


  47. aybeesea Says:

    And now for our enjoyment we have…. “The Deep”



  48. admin Says:


    On the face of it it is a valid enough thought, but not true; bandwidth on the narrow beam isn’t as much an issue as the broadcasters like to hide behind, and if this was the case, then ITV would be available as a free but encrypted service (like C4HD), but they have decided to opt for subscription only…all down to money!


  49. aybeesea Says:


    Please don’t repeat.



  50. David Austin Says:

    This is extremely disappointing news. While ITV 2/3/4 may not be essential viewing, the fact that their HD versions will not be appearing on the Freesat platform has enormous symbolic significance. It demonstrates that ITV has little faith in Freesat, despite it being partly their own venture. Moreover, the absence of what could have been potential new HD content (regardless of its quality) makes the platform less appealing to potential customers. Freesat needs more HD content to keep up and remain viable, but it seems that it isn’t in Freesat’s gift to secure that content – the platform is reliant on the whims (good will or business objectives) of content providers. Freesat isn’t sunk yet, but things aren’t looking great at the moment.


  51. aybeesea Says:


    Reasonably eloquent.



  52. peter p Says:

    I was persuaded to buy my Panasonic Freesat TV from John Lewis who promised that it ‘was ready for all of the future developments of tv.’
    Freesat said the same.
    So where are they now?
    Should I sue someone for false information?


  53. Jon Says:

    Hang on a minute, two poor channels and a half decent one (ITV4) go HD on Sky only and it is the end of Freesat? Talk about an over reaction. There wasn’t this much uproar when C4 went HD via Sky or Channel 5 and they both have better programmes than those three channels put together.

    Freesat will survive, Project Canvas is around the corner, C4HD is coming, the CBS Channels are getting stronger each month and a hopefully a decent channel is joining next month (Vintage TV).


  54. Tony Says:

    Isn’t it quite amazing that within 2 weeks of each other first Emma Scott of Freesat tells us that there thinking about pay options only then for Adam Crozier telling us ITV hd channels are going the pay way too.
    I did read in one article today that ITV 2,3,4 hd would not be totally tied to sky and will be available on other platforms , if this is the case I would expect Emma Scott to tell the public shortly about their plans on Freesat , which I guess will be that they are going to go the pay way…

    I think now is the time more than ever Freesat needs to give all their loyal customers a boost with some new content & some good news.
    The clock is ticking Freesat. It’s now over to you….


  55. lee b Says:

    I think itv need to do what is required to secure their long term survival, and sky have all the cards currently, at least itv are showing one hd channel on freesat, that’s more than five or c4 are doing. With advertising revenue on the way up who knows we might get another channel soon, with the price increases on sky recently its nice to have another option where you can record for free.


  56. neil Says:

    I hate $ky but whilst ever there are idiots out there who will pay an extortionate monthly fee for it, then I’m afraid we have little chance. Thank goodness for the BBC


  57. Chrislayeruk Says:

    Its only TV, you would think we had the floods of Pakistan going on here……Have some perspective please…….
    I have Freeview and Freesat. Pic quality is fine on both. HD is better, but its not a dealbreaker.
    I wont buy a freeview HD box untill and old box expires, why bother?
    Freesat is here to stay, Plenty of channels some HD for FREE…. What it says on the tin.
    If you cant get Freeview, you get Freesat….Simples…..Chris :)


  58. Soul4real Says:

    Just watched the news concerning Itv and ppv they also mentioned that HD is the biggest growing area in TV at the moment, look how $ky where boasting last week how much profit they have made on account of the uptake of there HD packages, that is why if Freesat a going down that road of giving us the choice, we should support that, they are not doing to make money they are just trying to broadened our viewing experience which is changing at a rapid pace.


  59. Rod Says:

    And still no subtitles on ITVHD. Discrimination I call it.


  60. Eagle eye Says:

    Well thank you ITV, at least with you jumping ship to SKY with your poor quality ITV 2, 3 and 4 HD channels it will save some space for some channels we all want. Many Thanks Mr Crozier


  61. Dave-H Says:

    Dont care in the slightest…ITVs entire line up of channels is a complete waste of bandwidth in my opinion.


  62. Spanners Says:

    Considering ITV have got it so badly wrong in the past I find it remarkable that anyone is worried about this announcement. What compelling content do they have on these channels to put on HD anyway?
    I read last week that shortly Sky will have more annual income than ITV and the BBC combined – now just as an exercise name me one quality programme that they have produced and then tell me that its worth paying for.
    HD is just a con that many have unfortunately bought into and convinced themselves that they need. What 99.9% of the population want is quality content first and secondly a decent picture – not HD. No one discerns between a SD picture and a HD picture when watching compelling content!


  63. IrishMJ Says:


    It would have been nice if ITV 2,3 & 4 HD were on Freesat, but I get the feeling that they would not exist without the backing of Sky.

    I understand the thinking behind ITV 2 HD, but can anyone tell me the point of ITV 3 & 4 HD? The Sweeny, The Saint, Poirot all in upscaled SD??? Hmmm…


  64. Terence Says:

    so less people will whatch these channels every advertisers dream


  65. aybeesea Says:

    It’s very impressive that people on here even KNOW what programmes are ON these “channels”.

    Well done!!



  66. Mark Says:

    If you want to watch them, pay for sky. I was a freesat early adopter and I am more than happy, yes it would be nice to have more HD channels but with $ky’s monopoly of the Satellites with a beam over the UK what do you expect? There was talk of a new beam over the UK, maybe we will see further HD channels FTA then? Bring on pay-tv channels to Freesat at least then we can watch (hopefully) just the channels we want. I for one would love to have Eurosport HD and would pay well for it, but I dont want all the other stuff that Sky/Virgin want to force down my neck.


  67. gingercol Says:

    I was a sky subscriber until a month ago most of the hd channels content is sd anyway and what is in hd is continually repeated .After i had looked at the channels I had been watching it was mostly (surprise surprise) BBC hd. ITV 2 3 and 4 hd will not be a reason for people to stay or join sky on their own. If you have a sky hd box and current viewing card you can watch c4 and c5 hd versions for free but the content is mostly sd. Overall freesat will not lose out especially when BBC 1 Hd arrives.


  68. Les Says:

    ITV apart – I would like to know (Given the likel;y squeeze on the licence fee and sringent economies to effect the BBC – just how much of the licence fee resources go on platforming the BBC transmissions on SKY. Als worth comment is still the absence of Channel4 HD from “Freesat” and it’s bankrolling from the public purse yet still having the capacity to platform on SKY.!!


  69. Les Says:

    ITV apart – I would like to know (Given the likeley squeeze on the licence fee and stringent economies to effect the BBC – just how much of the licence fee resources go on platforming the BBC transmissions on SKY. Also worth comment is still the absence of Channel4 HD from “Freesat” and it’s bankrolling from the public purse yet still having the capacity to platform on SKY.!!


  70. Les Says:

    ITV apart – I would like to know (Given the likeley squeeze on the licence fee and stringent economies to effect the BBC) – just how much of the licence fee resources go on platforming the BBC transmissions on SKY. Also worth comment is still the absence of Channel4 HD from “Freesat” and it’s bankrolling from the public purse yet still having the capacity to platform on SKY.!!


  71. Dipper Says:

    Why on earth are they bothering with HD on those channels anyway? The only things worth watching were made 20 to 30 years ago in 4:3 SD.

    It will only make a difference in another 20 years when they start to show today’s programmes in the future.


  72. Alan Says:

    @24 – I have extracted the comments of Michael from Bath, which says it all: – It continues to annoy me when people describe commercial television such as ITV as ‘Free’. We have already paid for the content they dish out everytime we buy something, be it food, clothes,toiletries etc; in the purchase price. Why should we pay twice and give Sky a cut. Just vote with your feet and boycott it. It’s the same with the criticism over the BBC’s websites,news service and IPlayer, we already pay for it through the license fee so it’s it bit rich for the Murdochs to continually criticise it!


  73. Robert Hudson Says:

    ITS the beginning of the END. who’s going to jump ship next???.


  74. Al Catraz Says:

    aybeesea – have you become an official spokesperson for every comment on this site?


  75. admin Says:

    We’ve given aybeesea a ban on commenting for a while. We are trying to run a sensible website for Freesat enthusiasts so his/her recent mindless drivel isn’t appreciated; comments such as “to HD or not 2HD” and “back to the future”, hmmmm! We’ve counted about 50 of these type comments in the last 12 hours alone!!!


  76. Ash Says:

    Well, to be fair, ITV are not turning their backs on Freesat, Freesat will still have ITV 1, 1HD, 2, 3 & 4 and should also get ITV 1 +1, theirs no room for more HD on Freesat at the moment anyway & like most say, what really would you watch on these HD versions?
    If Freesat do launch pay tv then these channels may end up being on Freesat one day!
    Don’t forget, Freesat will be getting ITV Player soon as well.


  77. Phil Owens Says:

    Freesat HD is finished. Apart from BBC HD & soon BBC1 HD and ITV 1 HD that’s it. I can see Channel 4 HD sticking with Freeview and pay services, Sky, VM . Five HD are not yet on Freeview so maybe they might stick with pay tv. And I think ITV 1 HD could go pay only by 2014, something to do with their license stopping them doing it until then.
    This is just me speculating….


  78. Phil Owens Says:

    Just to add, hope my speculation is wrong.


  79. admin Says:

    @Phil Owens

    C4HD isn’t pay-tv, but encrypted; there is talk of them reviewing this situation soon, so we’ll keep on top of that.

    Five HD won’t be on Freeview for quite some time; nothing to do with pay-tv, but because they didn’t take the option when it was offered and now effectively have lost their chance for another year or two.


  80. TheDukeOfHunslet Says:

    With the exception of ITV2 how do ITV expect to find enough HD content to justify HD on ITV3 and ITV4 – everything on it was filmed in SD.

    I will not give in – I will not pay £400 per year to watch free to air content…


  81. Andy Clayton Says:

    So they’ve got Minder from 1978 in HD have they? I think not. Even with upscaling ITV 2, 3 and 4 show mostly repeats so this can hardly be news for us to worry about. They don’t have enough content worth watching to fill ITV1 let alone 3 other channels. We really shouldn’t worry about this, no sane person would ever pay ITV to watch these non-channels.


  82. andybell Says:

    If nothing else, I hope this is a wake up call to Freesat. Freeview will always have a limited number of HD channels but the potential of satellite is enormous.

    Freesat has the potential to be a better option than Freeview nationally for both HD and SD- not just a way of helping people who live in the areas which can still only get analogue on terrestrial and will only get the partial Freeview service after switchover.

    It’s reasonable to assume that there will have to be HD versions of all the BBC channels – and at the very least the national variations – in the next year or two. With HD limited on Freeview, some of them will inevitably only be on satellite and cable at first. The BBC, obviously, cannot do a subscription deal. We just have to hope they’ll be in the clear rather than merely free to view.

    As C4 is also a public service, I hope they will soon find a way of going HD on Freesat. But as their spin off services as purely commercial, the sums would need to add up before they could make E4HD and the like free to air. As for Five, ITV2 etc – forget it.

    I live in an area where Freeview HD is now available. I bought Freesat primarily for the BBC HD Channel and access to ITV’s HD programmes along with the expectation that major FTA channels would eventually move to FTA HD on satellite. I went to some trouble to get it in as I live in a listed building. As things currently stand, I wish I’d waited for Freeview HD – hassle free installation and C4 HD too.

    Freesat won’t fail. With the BBC behind it, boxes will never go the way of BSB equipment. But that doesn’t mean it might not reach a plateau and become stuck as a niche product. I sincerely hope though that it doesn’t.


  83. Phil Owens Says:

    Thanks for that info. I just think as far as HD on Freesat is concerned we will have very few new HD channels to come. But I’m on a grumpy day today. : (


  84. Zub Says:

    De Ja Vu… ITV Digital all over again, then the BBC bailed it out with Freeview.


  85. Mark Says:

    It’s not just about ITV going to Sky. It’s about ITV virtually abandoning the public in general.
    Ok, so ITV 2, 3 & 4 don’t have many viewers. I only have ITV4 on for Touring Cars or Football and is usually only watched when the wife watches the Xtra Factor.
    However, these sort of channels should be forced to go on as many platforms as possible.
    I don’t just mean the ITV ones, but all the BBC, C4 and 5 HD channels should all be on every platform.
    Why should anyone be forced to pay extra to watch channels from the main five broadcasters in HD?


  86. Neil Says:

    I think this is a really sad decision by ITV and for me personally I’d have preferred them to keep these channels SD only than play in to the evil hands of B Sky B. In essence the programming on there is mostly dire anyway but all this adds to Sky’s monopoly which is growing bigger and bigger.

    I still do believe though that churn rate may increase with the rise in subs this coming October, plus the fact people paying their £10 “HD tax” will see half the channels they currently enjoy which are not part of the SD pack they have, removed.


  87. glyn Says:

    Listen people we’ve all been conned from the start,We were told to get a hd ready tv so that we could see brilliant programs in glorious hd ,Humbug, Then they said you need a set top box for this, and a set for that but still no brilliant programs.And for project canvass you will need another set top box.So my friends if you don’t want to pay through the nose for mostly rubbish tv let’s all go buy a good book.


  88. Phil Owens Says:

    One thing that’s crossed my mind is. Will ITV move some of it’s HD content like err! Corrie to say ITV 2, then show it a few hours or next day on ITV 1 HD so those paying will get it first.


  89. Zub Says:

    Re: post 87. I don’t think they will, if they change the day format and make it exclusive to ITV2 first then they are shooting themselves……


  90. Phil Owens Says:

    @88 Zub
    I think they’ve shot themselves in the foot anyway.


  91. andy w Says:

    just had 3 freesat boxes installed in my home in may- if i had known that this freesat was a poorly supported platform then i would have got freesat from sky at the beginning.I will give to xmas for freesat to improve if it does not then freesat from sky is the option i will choose.


  92. HD-Sceptic Says:

    I just don’t understand this at all. Presumably $ky pay ITV a lump sum for exclusive rights to these new channels. $ky boxes are supposed to be connected to your phone line so that, periodically, they can phone home and tell $ky what you have been watching. If this reveals that viewing figures have beaten some $ky target, ITV might get a bonus. So, how do $ky make it pay? These new channels will be added to an existing $ky package – does that mean the cost of that package will go up?

    Looking at the channels themselves, Minder, The Sweeney, The Professionals might look good in HD (were they recorded on tape or film?) but we’ve been watching them, on and off, for almost 40 years. Who is going to pay extra to join $ky to watch them in HD? $ky seems to have an impressive array of HD channels in its HD package, so what will these old repeats add to that? #87 suggests a reworking of the ITV schedules to add value to this new package, I wonder! Some changes will have to be made to these “second division” ITV channels for $ky to see a route to a profit.

    I remain an HD sceptic. As FreeSat has never had access to these new HD channels, we are not really losing anything. Let’s continue enjoying watching what Freesat does best.


  93. Trevor Harris Says:

    I must admit that I expected BBC to have all its channels in HD by now. The issue seems to be the BBC commitment to freeview. They seem to be very unwilling to add any more HD channels without them being on Freeview HD aswell. This means we will not see any more BBC HD channels until 2013 when more transponder space may be available.

    ITV ‘s decision is purly an economic one. HD channels have to be paid for and at the moment that means pay tv. As for content ITV have said they will be securing new content for these channels. They have also said they are going to remaster some of their old programmes for HD.

    It may eventually be possible for ITV to have a subscription seperate from Sky. ESPN has been working with Sky to make this possible on thier sports channels.


  94. Lee B Says:

    HD costs more to produce with editing, sets and camera and even costs more in bandwidth to broadcast, so I think we are doing ok for a free service so far, the recession has not helped. We all want more so maybe a pay option on freesat is the way forward.


  95. Zub Says:

    I agree Lee B, Freesat should seriously think about having the option of pay tv. If it doesn’t make the transition, they could potentially have a platform which will no longer be attractive to the masses. I would be happy to receive more HD channels(like Sky’s offering) and paying a reasonable price. The problem is, the change would have to be approved by the BBC Trust, and some of us know how long that can take…..


  96. Tony Says:

    The more I try and get my head round this the more I get confused. What gain will ITV have going to sky , as mentioned above they will recieve a small amount of dosh but the only people to gain will be the people already with sky hd content.

    Freesat customers are not going to jump ship just to get these channels in HD or upscalled HD, and I can’t see people flocking to sky for them either….

    It must be just for the extra revenue , I can’t see any other reason.
    Sd quality isn’t that bad on these channels anyway , so I guess it’s not much of a great loss as I first thought…..


  97. Steve Says:

    This is not a disaster. It seems stupid to me that ITV can consider launching HD versions of their digital channels when it supposedly costs so much for anyone to do it. The channels would have to be encrypted anyway as they can’t get room on the tight-beam satellite. Sky are desperately trying to boost their HD range because they are changing their price plan, so these channels would make the Entertainment Pack have more channels. ITV get their revenue from advertising on SD versions anyway, which I don’t see Freeview losing, at least yet. Sky have obviously offered a sweenter – maybe a reduction in carriage costs initially with the promise of more of the subscription revenue in the future when more people choose Pay TV.

    What irritates me is there is no more original coverage or new programming, just the same split over more and more channels. So more filler and repeats and for the option of what? Choosing between tens of other channels with nothing on either when you actually don’t have a good reason for watching TV?


  98. JoeM Says:

    I have a HD tv and to be honest i dont think HD is all that much better than digital tv so let ITV go and charge ppl who think the difference is worth paying for plus crap programmes


  99. PaulB007 Says:

    Its a lose lose situation.

    Bad for freesat users and ultimately bad for $ky users.

    The lack of HD on FTA platforms will mean that those paying the £10 a month extra HD fee on $ky, will continue to do so for years to come.

    There is only one winner here. Mr Murdoch (as usual).

    The lack of competition for $ky is becoming a real concern. They just do what ever they want. Buy up all the sport and now it seems all the channels too.

    Personally I am not really interested in ITV2,3 or 4 (in SD or HD) but there is no doubt that its a big blow to the freesat platform. I think we are on the slippery slope to Pay only TV, which will be a sad day.

    I just hope that the BBC will continue to be funded by the licence fee. Once that goes we will all be paying through the nose to watch the telly.


  100. Lone_Rider Says:

    I do not watch that many ITV2,3 or 4 programmes, but this will go down well in the $ky marketing of “we have the most HD” and will be seen by the general public as the only way to watch HD TV.

    This along with Virgins referral of “project Canvas” to offcom is yet another nail in the coffin of free to air TV in this country.

    2012 Olympics in HD and then Pay TV for all………:-(


  101. Kevin McFarlane Says:

    Well, I guess all the “no HD” moaners can now get out their cheque books and pay Sky instead.


  102. Expat Says:

    That’s why they should have included a conditional acces system on Freesat.
    They sould have had the FTV option from the planning stage, now we are stuck with Astra 2D channel and the low budget channels,


  103. barrie Says:

    Has this been mentioned?;
    Not clear if its paying for services such as lovefilm (who have their own player that I assume you can watch using something like the Wii player on tv) or for films.

    I agree that its not just the loss of HD channels but the fact that premium tv is being monopolised by one company


  104. Oyodi Says:

    FreeSat …..The Furture!
    FreeSat is a joint venture between BBC & ITV, so when I see that ITV plans to abandon it own platform by not supplying ITV2HD, ITV3HD & ITV4HD on FreeSat in the foreseeable future, I can only see this as undermining the future sales of FreeSat, when one of the founder member seems to have lost faith in the platform.

    I know someone who works in one of the major stores here in Devon and he says that FreeSat sales have all but collapsed with the coming of FreeView HD here in Devon, which to new customers, FreeView has CH4HD!!!

    FreeSat and the BBC now needs to get all four channels transmitting in HD as soon as is possible, that’s BBC1HD, BBC2HD, BBC3HD, BBC4HD plus the BBC24HD, this will give FreeSat back its advantage over FreeView (which at present is limited to only have a capacity to transmit 5 HD channels).


  105. Dipper Says:


    “andy w, just had 3 freesat boxes installed in my home in may- if i had known that this freesat was a poorly supported platform then i would have got freesat from sky at the beginning.I will give to xmas for freesat to improve if it does not then freesat from sky is the option i will choose.”

    Freesat from Sky won’t get you ANY HD channels at all! What’s the point of going there as opposed to real Freesat?

    If you want their HD you will have to get a £25.00 card & a full price or 2nd hand Sky+ HD box to watch free HD channels & you still won’t be able to use any of the + features such as recording, live pause, etc.

    I think Freesat does a great job.


  106. Jon Says:

    andy w, did you not do any research before you paid for the 3 freesat boxes to be installed? If I had a pound for the amount of people on here and Digital Spy who complain about the channels they get after the choose to buy Freesat then I would be a rich man. Go to and you can see all the channels you will receive, not exactly rocket science.

    With regards to C4HD, isn’t it a year since they signed a contract with Sky? It would be great if we got C4HD this month.

    And finally, ITV should show they still back Freesat by releasing the ITV Player.


  107. anonymous Says:

    I used to be on freesat hd+, got fed up with it and sold it 6 months later, Reason being channels and HD channels were very poor, and no decent channel joined within the 6 months i had it.

    So i went with sky hd and have over 40 HD channels, and decent channels to watch (with the best PVR user interface around)

    The reason i visit this site is to see if any more channels have joined with freesat yet. Its clear that hasn’t happened.

    The think that i question, is that you are very negative about ITV’s move, and that you don’t care about the programs that they have on there other 3 channels. But if it was the other way around, and freesat received these HD channels, you would be praising them so much!


  108. Dipper Says:

    Ain’t “free” though, is it, Mr Anonymous?


  109. PaulB007 Says:

    At Mr Anonymous

    And it isn’t very good either. More channels but i bet you spend most of the time watching FTA TV.

    That is what really amazes me about the $ky packages (especially the basic multichannels package). If people analyse what they watch then in the majority of cases they will find that most of the time they are not actually watching what they are paying for.


  110. gingercol Says:

    I am sorry but we do not live in a perfect world .The facts are if you want more hd channels you have to pay and it comes down to personal preferance on content . I personally am happy with the hd content i get for free (non subscription ) as with 3D tv’s there is no where near enough c 3D broadcasts for the cost of a new 3D tv. As has been said before good things come to those who wait, this applies to freesat.


  111. gingercol Says:

    I am sorry but we do not live in a perfect world . If you want more hd channels you have to pay.It comes down to personal preferance on content i personally am happy with the free non subscription channels you get with freesat . As has been said before good things come to those who wait ,this applies to freesat . Also in this life you gets what you pay for!


  112. gingercol Says:

    sorry for the double post my ps3 sometimes doesn’t always show if a reply has been posted or not. Mr anonymous just about proves my point you gets what you pay for and with sky you certainly PAY!


  113. Craig Says:

    It is certainly a shame that ITV have decided to take their new HD channels down this route, but it certainly isnt the be all and end all. What would of been a disaster for Freesat is if they had taken the SD versions of the channels down this route as well. I personally would rather new reasonably quality channels join freesat such as Five US and Fiver, rather than have HD versions of channels we can already view.

    Dont get me wrong, I enjoy watching HD versions of programs just like the rest of you, but I think in time, many of these channels 4HD, 5HD, E4HD etc WILL come to Freesat, but not until HD channels become the norm, and not just an extra revenue stream. This will be when Freesat comes into its own as Freeview will no longer be able to compete in terms of HD due to capacity problems.

    I also find the prospect of opening up the CAM slot to buy additional channels like top up tv on Freeview an interesting developement, and one I would welcome. I dont think it has done Freeview any harm. I for one would be interested in channels such as sky sports 1 and 2 for say £10 – £12 a month like on BT Vision. Its all about choices, you can choose to use the CAM to buy additonal channels if you wish, but you certainly dont have to, you could just continue to use Freesat in the excellent form it already is.

    Just my thoughts.


  114. Dave K Says:

    Another costy investment in a techology that is going now where fast, over hyped over sold and under delivering,welcome to uk plc.


  115. Dave K Says:

    Ditch the antiquated BBC licence fee and then maybe we would have some cash for pay tv, just a thought, about time the BBC stood on their own two feet.


  116. Big Sa Says:

    1) BBC to have their funding reduced – payback time by the Tories, thanx Mr Murdoch ! The quality & output are a huge threat to SKY in their opinion… but not everyone can afford sky , let alone another £10 for HD… the should be forced by legislation to provide at cost price all free to air programmes on all platforms….maybe ban tv’s, DVD’s & videos…that ‘ll get the unemployed back to work …

    2) ITV – most of the content we have paid for large numbers of repeats – changing format to HD is not a huge expence – if it was so expensive to do new stuff in HD why is the news now in this format….what a waste anyway ! Why have political programmes, etc on HD ?!?!?
    There are many people in the country that can only get satellite they shouldn’t be made to pay subscription charges to sky…all services free to air @ cost price & on all platforms !!!! WHY NOT ????????

    3) Greed will prevail, as you will see by many of the posts here ‘JACK’ attitude rules thanks to mrs Thatcher & all ‘JACKS’ out there…I hope at some point ( as has happened to some well off people! ) you end up selling the ‘Big Issue’ even just for a short time. Realise that not all people are to blame for the circumstances they find themselves in ! … short, be more civilised…be less of a politician ! Like people today, the good ones are few and far between & becoming more of a minority.


  117. Carl Says:

    I didn’t even know ITV3 and 4 existed…


  118. Francis Says:

    @ admin here’s a question for you, what’s the future of Freesat now!! It’s the writing on the wall, after what happened to Channel 5. I look at it this way, all the fiasco about ITV was a smoke screen, and they had a good idea that their future didn’t lie partnership with the Beeb and Freesat, but with SKY

    I am a betting man but i can tell you there’s alot more to come… i guess the future for Freesat is going to be very bleak unless, they can pull something out of their big hat, and surprise us ALL!!


  119. Richard Crichton Says:

    @11 I disagree. You don’t get what you pay for with $ky. You pay for high quality programmes and get low quality plus you are bombarded with advertising. In my book if you have to watch advertising there should be no subscription but $ky have got people both ways plus they charge an extra £10 for HD. It should be HD as standard if you are paying a subscription.We are creating a two tier broadcasting system in the UK. HD for the rich only and the rest of us have to put up with SD. Thank goodness for some free HD on Freesat with BBC1 HD on it’s way before the end of the year (hopefully).
    How is ITV going to fill ITV2,3 and 4 with HD when they can’t even fill ITV1?
    The BBC could make savings by dropping the Parliament channel which mainly politicians watch and one of the two daytime kiddie channels.


  120. busker59 Says:

    Well I’m not going to make a fuss over this. Like other people have said, there is hardly the content on ITV 2 – 4 to make any difference, to me anyway.

    The only reason I purchased Freesat was so that I could receive the Welsh local news and weather instead of that from Bristol, the HD channels were a bonus for me. Now that my local transmitter has gone digital, I can now receive Welsh terrestrial programming through Freeview, and that maybe the route I’ll take if CH4 & 5 become available in HD on that platform.


  121. Shane Says:

    Just wait until BBC1 HD is on the platform and then all the worry will dissipate for a while. It will also mean more people buying into Freesat because they won’t want to pay exorbitant fees for all those HD channels that they are unlikely to watch! The real danger is Freeview because as the digital switch over approaches different regions, people will no longer need to use satellite. Most people will be happy with 3 HD channels as they don’t want to spend their whole lives in front of the box. Long live Freesat!!


  122. andybell Says:

    But by the time BBC1 HD launches, Freeview HD will be available in most big cities along with some entire regions – ie STV North, Border, Granada, Wales, West, South West.

    People in the parts of the STV Central, Yorkshire, Anglia and Central regions which don’t have the “advance” service will merely need to be persuaded to wait patiently for a few months and switchover. I think I’m correct in saying that Glasgow, Leeds and Birmingham are all in the “advanced” ranks.

    Any boost from BBC1 HD alone will only be temporary I’m afraid.


  123. Terence Says:

    after a hard days work, there is only between 7pm to 11pm to whatch tv
    thats the mass tv market any way
    they should rename these itv channels
    itv2 plus last week
    itv3 plus last year
    itv4 plus last 30 years
    In england most people whatch BBC1 & ITV and that fills my 4 hours of tv each working day, and thats in hd mainly.


  124. WERT Says:

    Before setting out on his epic search, Crozier told reporters, “Ideally we’re looking for someone who hasn’t seen any original programming for about thirty years, and will therefore treat our schedule as a night of glittering televisual premières.”


  125. Kevin Says:

    Well said Terence @ 122.
    Does make you wonder why so many people pay for so many channels that they never watch.


  126. mcmlxxiii Says:


    There’a an old saying:

    “You can’t polish a turd”

    Let then upscale their shite, it will still look shite.


  127. Steve L Says:

    I am in disbelief that SKY are even allowed to do this.
    Tell me otherwise but I don’t believe that there is a single minute of HD sourced material on the 3 secondary ITV channels.
    It should NOT be allowed and the really bad thing is that SKY are adding these 3 to their HD tally – it is nothing short of a lie and is the only reason I can see that SKY are paying ITV for this.
    DCMS need to do something about this but they won’t (and we all know why)
    Murdoch must be rolling over belly laughing!


  128. Jonathan Says:

    Isn’t this only a problem for freesat if the ITV2,3,4 HD channels are going to be available on freeview? There’s nothing in the article to suggest they will be available on freeview.


  129. Chris Says:

    It’s a shame we can’t have ITV2,3&4 in HD quality, especially ITV2 i don’t watch 3&4 anyway. But if we can get Chanel 4 & 5 in HD then that will be good.
    I know we have BBC1HD. But when will we see it having the same Chanel content as BBC1 in other words simulcast.


  130. Alan Says:

    The important point in all this is that, yes SKY will have these extra ITV channels but you still have to pay for them. As a fan of FREESAT, I chose it because it is just that free. The content on the extra ITV channels are for me personally not worth paying a huge monthly fee, just to see them in HD. I recently watched the Tour de France on ITV4, ok it was not in HD but the enjoyment in watching it was the excitment of the race not the quality of the picture.

    Yes some will choose to pay for the service but they need to ask themselves how often do they watch those ITV channels and will they get full value for the huge fee that that they will pay. I will spend my extra money a few glasses of wine to sip as I still enjoy watching ITV channels in SD.


  131. Paul D Says:

    This is the best news I have heard since freesat started. Let the mugs pay loads of money to sky for the dross on ITV 2,3 and 4 HD. Meanwhile we will reap the benefits as ITV1HD improves. Of all the channels that we wanted on freesat, these weren’t on list so who cares?

    Admin it is a bit over dramatic to claim ITV has turned it’s back on freeview, it has done no such thing. If it removed ITV1 HD then I would agree it had, but it hasn’t.

    Think about it this way. SKY are ultimately doing ITV and free TV a favour. By paying ITV huge sums for these crap channels, just to get their HD channel numbers up, they are turning round ITV’s fortunes and ensuring it will stay around as a free broadcaster for years to come.

    It is a win/win situation.


  132. admin Says:

    @Paul D

    Admin it is a bit over dramatic to claim ITV has turned it’s back on freesat

    Catchy title though :D, and at least it got a rise out of Freesat/ITV 😉


  133. Paul D Says:

    Tell me more admin, how did it get a rise out of them?


  134. admin Says:

    @Paul D

    They wanted to clarify their position togeather and that ITV1 (SD and HD) wouldn’t at any stage be taken away etc. The idea of the post was to gain a reaction from all parties, plus it is very useful to know that each party involved is reading every comment made by you guys, which can only help.


  135. Tony Says:

    Sky Tv £50+ for the full package a month and its going up on the 1st September….
    Bless em’ . I wish them all the luck in the world….
    They call this a recession in the uk , not in Mr Murdochs eyes……
    Some people paying over £600 a year for more repeats than ITV !
    ITV 2/3/4 hd let hem have it , its not a great loss anyway as most people realise.Let them get on with it.It’s maybe not all that bad for Freesat after all..
    Definately not as bad as I first thought .
    Let’s keep it FREE and have a good holiday with the £600 saved!


  136. Paul D Says:

    Glad to hear you got the response you were looking for.

    Our old friend, Derek, was trolling the Avforums freesat forum, claiming that ITV1HD was about to go pay. I knew it was a load of rubbish but it’s nice to have it confirmed.

    I really fail to see anything bad about this news. If anything, it is helping to secure ITV as a big player long into the future.

    I signed up to sky HD exactly a year ago. 1 year later I have cancelled my HD pack as I realised that 95% of the recordings on my planner were from ITV HD and BBC HD. I am very tempted to go with BT Vision for the triple play with sky sports, or maybe even TUTV. SKY is full of over rated dross and I think they have major churn problems just around the corner.


  137. Al Catraz Says:

    WERT 123 – nice web site! … and how true the article!


  138. Dipper Says:

    Got to agree with Al Catraz, thanks for the link to newsarse WERT 123, great fun!


  139. Nathanael Adams Says:

    Disappointing news, but it doesn’t bother me as I very rarely (if at all) watch ITV’s extra channels, it’s all endless repeats anyway. The only time I do watch is ITV4 for British Touring cars. In fact, as a family, we barely watch ITV1 nowadays. And, going by their current ‘HD’ channel, I guess most of the programming on ITV 2,3,4 HD will be upscaled HD anyway! So, in my books, no loss.


  140. Iain.d Says:

    Content is content. I’ve said this before. What is the point of having up-scaled or poor programme content in HD. If you want to collect and wear HD channels like badges then carry on and pay for it. If you want good quality programmes then select the right medium for the job. Freesat and Freeview do an excellent job. Where they fail is not pandering to cheapskates who want everything but won’t put their hands in their pockets.

    I do think that it’s time for the authorities to look into public broadcast services to make sure that the fulfil their brief.


  141. Terence Says:

    A year ago when itv were showing champions leage football they used to say if your got freesat,you can push the red button now and get HD.
    When they are showing it on itv4 are they going to say ,if you go to sky you can see it in hd. its like itv telling every whats on bbc tonight.
    freeview lossing sky spots news this month is the big loss for me


  142. ChrisK Says:

    Although the ITV saga is bad news on the whole I read someone’s view of it yesterday saying that the HD versions of 2, 3 & 4 can be liked to polishing a turd which I thought is a good disruption of these channels going from SD to HD.

    I have added a Freeview HD PVR to my line-up and my HDR, although not completely redundant yet, is getting near to being so.


  143. Droid1961 Says:

    Looks like SKY have won again, I’m old enough to remember when I brought into BSB (British SATELLITE Boardcasting) . Only for it to merge/join SKY.

    But will continue to watch, as I like the BBC iplayer.


  144. Raymondo Says:

    I only have old, non digital tv’s, and need to buy new. My area is not too good for Freeview, so can you tell me please Admin, should I go Freesat. Think it will be years before I go HD. I am a pensioner.


  145. admin Says:

    If you only want access to free digital tv and radio, and don’t have a good Freeview reception, then Freesat is probably the best option for you providing you can get a satellite dish installed and you have no issues with trees or buildings that would block the alignment to the south east direction. Other than that, other digital platforms all charge you a subscription.


  146. Derek B Says:

    I’ve noticed in the last few days that STV have mentioned programes available on STV & STV HD, even showing an STV HD logo. I have not seen anything on this forum. I did a retune today of my freesat box but no STV HD channel appeared. Have STV joined the ‘red button’ service?


  147. Keith Says:

    Most stuff on ITV2 3 and 4 is old rubbish that is barely worth watching in SD. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to pay a subcription to watch it in upscaled foramt.


  148. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    @ 146 Keith

    I have to disagree with your sweeping assumption that most stuff on ITV 2, 3 and 4 is old rubbish. OK a lot of it is old but programmes such as the Prisoner are well worth watching and it has now been remastered in HD! Many of the old shows that have been shown were produced on 35mm film stock and are relatively easy to remaster in HD. Space 1999 is receiving the treatment.

    Another classic TV series which is being remastered for HD is the documentary series World at War. This even includes the sound track. No way can this series be described as rubbish.

    Finally ITV 3 often show programmes made in HD. Greatest Cities of the World and Doc Martin come to mind.


  149. Neil Says:

    From reading the majority of these posts you’d have thought that it was the end of the world!

    Freesat will never ‘fail’, it is doing exactly what it was set up to do. For me it serves a great purpose and fulfils all the channels I need, the only exception would be C4HD which I’m sure will arrive in due course.

    What Freesat needs, and I’ve said this on other postings, is good marketing. Which sky average subscribers actually know which channels are FTA and which are not. I reckon not many, Freesat needs to ‘get out there’ with it’s ad marketing campaigns, especially in the few Months running up to Christmas and directly target Sky churners as well as those wishing to upgrade to the platform. I’m sure Sky will moan about this but hey, it’s not like they are pulling their dirty tricks to try and keep content from arriving on the platform is it??


  150. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    @ Neil 148

    I was reading that Sky spend just over 1 Billion a year on marketing. No wonder they are putting up their subs! Another good reason for staying put with Freesat?


  151. Neil Says:

    Yep, I heard some time back the figure was close to £900million so can believe now it’s over £1billion. That sounds amazing for the number of net subscribers they actually attract each quarter (100,000’ish). To me if they slashed their marketing costs they simply wouldn’t attract the number of subscribers whether that be to upgrade to HD or as new subscribers full-stop.

    Back to the ITV2,3 and 4 HD thing, I was looking at BARB’s figures late last night and their overall share of TV viewing. Using last weeks figures as an example ITV2, 3 and 4 take 2.0, 1.8 and 1.3% respectively, compare that with BBC1’s massive 20.7% (the most viewed UK channel) and if we look at it from a quality vs quantity perspective BBC1HD joining Freesat is going to be of interest to a lot more people who actually already watch the channel. I also found of interest that whilst ITV1 got around 14%, ITV1HD only managed 0.3%.

    I really hope Freesat capitalises this Autumn on BBC1’s HD arrival to the platform as I’m sure a sales boost will follow. It will be interesting to see Sky’s churn this coming Autumn too as many seem unhappy at price rises, especially those who feel they are ‘pawns’ in the Sky vs BT Vision Sky Sports wholesaling issue!


  152. Richard Crichton Says:

    @145 Derek B
    No STV haven’t joined the red button service. The HD plugs refer to their Freeview HD service only and not to Freesat.


  153. David leek Says:

    (10yrs + Satisfied Sky customer & Freesat user)
    Once you’ve paid the £145 Licence Fee – TV might be considered free.

    Our Sky subscription package (4 of the 6 basic packs + HD) is under £400 pa.
    In our opinion very good value. Includes 18 HD channels (soon to be more !)
    the best EPG on the planet and a recording facility which is user friendly and
    faultless from day one.

    Commercial Channels are time slipped via the hard drive.
    (particularly CH5 who show adverts with bits of a movie between them)
    The real advantage is having the choice of when to watch.
    We currently see it as our own VOD. This we believe along with HD makes the whole TV business worth having. Our favourites and for some time have been the Discovery/NatGeo/NatGeoWild/History HD channels others are creeping up the popularity list and as for Sky News HD – Bench mark channel.

    Sky in general must be doing something right. Surely if a better offer/deal was on the table they would not have or keep the volume who choose to subscribe.

    A choice you don’t have with the mandatory License Fee. For what !
    The privilege of keeping the BBC in a manor to which it’s become accustom.
    No thanks – if only we had the choice. Our percentage viewing of the BBC is so little it would not be missed. We are aware this is not everyone’s view but at present we pay (via the License Fee) for those who’s majority viewing is the BBC. If you believe Murdock is coining it, he’s not alone, but the difference with our man is you have a choice. For just over double the fee we get from Sky a varied and superior amount of TV.

    TV is going digital (no choice) an ideal opportunity to scrap the Licence Fee encrypt the BBC behind a subscription, lets say £145 or dare we suggest higher to cover the possibility of customer short fall.
    Would that not be fairer for ALL.

    The supporters of the now genuine free TV would have little/less to moan about.
    The BBC gets its followers on subscription instead of the License Fee. Sky and probably other suppliers would continue as before, may see an increase in customers. For the TV public it’s a win win or are we missing something.

    Wish List:
    Pani VT20 series TV & Move the HD charge to 3D (or)
    No charge HD if you subscribe to either a Movies or Sport Package.
    (NB: The Foxsat PVR is used, like us, in our ageing camper van)


  154. David Leek Says:

    (10yrs + Satisfied Sky customer & Freesat user)
    Once you’ve paid the £145 Licence Fee – TV might be considered free.

    Our Sky subscription package (4 of the 6 basic packs + HD) is under £400 pa.
    In our opinion very good value. Includes 18 HD channels (soon to be more !)
    the best EPG on the planet and a recording facility which is user friendly and
    faultless from day one.

    Commercial Channels are time slipped via the hard drive.
    (particularly CH5 who show adverts with bits of a movie between them)
    The real advantage is having the choice of when to watch.
    We currently see it as our own VOD. This we believe along with HD makes the whole TV business worth having. Our favourites and for some time have been the Discovery/NatGeo/NatGeoWild/History HD channels others are creeping up the popularity list and as for Sky News HD – Bench mark channel.

    Sky in general must be doing something right. Surely if a better offer/deal was on the table they would not have or keep the volume who choose to subscribe.

    A choice you don’t have with the mandatory License Fee. For what !
    The privilege of keeping the BBC in a manor to which it’s become accustom.
    No thanks – if only we had the choice.
    Our percentage viewing of the BBC is so little it would not be missed. We are aware this is not everyone’s view but at present we pay (via the License Fee)
    for those who’s majority viewing is the BBC.
    If you believe Murdock is coining it, he’s not alone, but the difference with our man is you have a choice. For just over double the fee we get from Sky a varied and superior amount of TV.

    TV is going digital (no choice) an ideal opportunity to scrap the Licence Fee encrypt the BBC behind a subscription, lets say £145 or dare we suggest higher to cover the possibility of customer short fall.
    Would that not be fairer for ALL.

    Supporters of the now genuine free TV would have little/less to moan about.
    The BBC gets its followers on subscription instead of the License Fee.
    Sky and probably other suppliers would continue as before, may see an increase in customers.
    For the TV public it’s a win win or are we missing something.

    Wish List:
    Pani VT20 series TV & Move the HD charge to 3D (or)
    No charge HD if you subscribe to either a Movies or Sport Package.
    (NB: The Foxsat PVR is used, like us, in our ageing camper van)
    apologies for double entry


  155. mcmlxxiii Says:

    For the record Sky’s EPG is not the “best on the planet”.
    I agree it is superior to Freesat’s offering but is a poor second to Bt Vision EPG…..
    (Even if it is Microsoft).
    And like I said earlier in the thread. ITV4 is pretty crap along with its siblings so really I laugh at anyone daft enough to pay for such a load of utter tripe.


  156. Tony Hales Says:

    Why are you telling us how good Sky is? This is a Freesat site for people who don’t want to pay the Dirty Digger £400 (or anything) a year to watch Sky dross.Watching the commercials should pay for commercial TV not paying a subscription and watching commercials. I had Sky since it started but realised that I was watching perhaps two Sky shows a week and the rest of the time I was watching the five terrestrial channels. There are only so many times you can watch the endless repeats on Discovery and other similar channels and then there is nothing to watch. As that song said 500 channels and nothing on.
    Freesat suits my needs perfectly so any attempt to persuade me that Sky is so much better will fail because I know it’s not.


  157. Tony Says:

    Why does the BBC get so much stick over its tv license fee…
    I think they do a fantastic job for what its worth. I would rather pay this fee than pay rich high prices from Sky Tv.
    I bet the majority of people going on about the fee are sky subscribers…..
    Keep the BBC license fee & dump sky , The sooner the better…
    I would rather watch 4 channels for free , like I did when I was a kid , rather than get ROBBED !


  158. Neil Says:

    “TV is going digital (no choice) an ideal opportunity to scrap the Licence Fee encrypt the BBC behind a subscription, lets say £145 or dare we suggest higher to cover the possibility of customer short fall.
    Would that not be fairer for ALL.”

    Err, no thanks! The £145/yr licence fee is excellent value for money, scrapping it would be the end of FTA TV and play directly in to Murdoch’s hands.


  159. Alan Says:

    @ David Leek – If Sky is so good then why do you need to use freesat as well?


  160. solkid Says:

    Until additional satellites are launched Freesat cannot increase any HD channels because they have to be free to air and to do so are on a narrow beam direct to the UK.
    Sky has more transponders on wider beams and thus have to control reception from outwith the target area by encryption.
    ITV have done this to encourage HD viewers to watch their channels and thus enable more viewers watching and seeing adverts.
    The Sky platform can facilitate this.
    Sadly Freesat is the new Betamax!!!


  161. Alan Says:

    One small point but without the licence fee the BBC would probably not exist and not be making the excellant programmes it continues to produce year after year. More importantly many of the Sky channels depend on repeats of old quality BBC programmes. So without the BBC Sky would be much poorer in respect of programme choice.


  162. Paul S Watts Says:

    @ David Leek

    The fact that you have a camper van and admit to it………………..says it all



  163. David Leek Says:

    Paul (161) (sorry – did not understand your comment)
    Some would call our van an Italian Motorhome.
    (little bungalow on wheels really).
    We fondly call it a Camper Van and the graphics on its rear boast the words “Camping Car”. An addition made by the generosity of the French traffic authority some years ago. They advised us, when asked, always call your vehicle a Camping Car and you will enjoy lower tariff’s. It’s all moved on these days – Motorhomes are ten a penny and tariff’s for (weight/length/height/axles) are all well established.

    Alan (158)
    The Foxsat PVR is used as stated in original post. (see end comment)

    As for why we have Freesat. (“if Sky is so good”)
    Motorhome – not allowed to take the viewing card out the country.
    Main TV an Avtex 19” HD with DVD and hidden virtual 5.1 surround sound.
    (Also, a HiFi system with iPod Touch, Dab and Internet radio).

    We support iTunes as well as Sky. (Also the BBC but not by choice)

    We also travel with internet access.
    (boys will have there toys and at my age you have to have something to fiddle with) I also prefer music/radio/opera above any TV.

    The Foxsat PVR is serviced by a twin LNB Planner (Camos) Flat panel dish, which to date, being newish technology, has proved perfect for the job.
    (all self installed)

    Our travels usually include a lot of outdoor activities and TV is most certainly at the bottom of the entertainment list. But if there’s something of interest, whoever is providing it, it invariably gets recorded and watched when convenient or not at all.

    My first post was not a flag waving exercise for Murdock. His firm provides a service, which we consider value for money and choose to use.

    The BBC’s domestic Broadcasting services are financed by the TV Licence Fee which by law we have to pay. (Max penalty £1000 but we understand this is more of a threat – £150 appears to be the norm)

    The BBC is little more than a subsidised entertainment firm. Albeit the amount £145 is set by the Government. Joe Public (rich or poor) is paying for the right to watch free channels, supported by advertising, (ITV and Channel 4) because they cannot watch them without mandatory payment to a competitor –
    The BBC. That’s not fair. (speaking of fairness)
    Wonder if I should mention north of the boarder ! – maybe not.

    The BBC has earned its place and reputation and we have no wish to see it disappear. But its funding system is at best unjust. If it cannot survive on a subscription basis (and we for two believe it couldn’t) It should be replaced by Public Service Broadcasting, use the same people and equipment, might mean a few changes and fund it from general taxation. (That’s worth thinking about)
    The Licence Fee is a Tax after all.
    (Is it true the Beeb have hundreds of managers at a £100.000 a pop)

    tks for interest.


  164. Scott Says:

    I don’t get it. ITV HD exclusive to freesat, now ITV HD service for sky only?
    They failed before with pay TV, and probably will again as I can’t see there being many HD programs on those channels being their golden oldie programs.

    They should have put CI modules in the receivers, then they may have been able to simalcast encryption with a free tv card if lack of bandwith been a problem.

    Germany’s Privat Senders, like ITV, have launched in HD with a one off fee for tv card. I had expected ITV, C4, FIVE, to do something like this when the announcement about pay tv was made.

    Never mind, let’s hope freesat continues to thrive, even if ITV can’t be bothered.


  165. Tony Says:

    @Dave 162
    The BBC License is EXCELLENT value for money and one worth paying in my opinion. I happen to watch alot on all of their channels including top programming for my children on the two channels which they provide.BBC HD & ITV HD show the biggest & most watched programmes in the UK. Have we ever seen SKY in the the top 5 errrrr never !
    The pay tv sevice from SKY to me & many others is day light robbery. Over £50 a month for the top subscription. Where’s the justification . I don’t think there is one, but if people want to pay this then its up to them. Let them get on with it & good luck to them . I would rather spend the subscription on my family !


  166. Chrislayeruk Says:

    Plus 1 here Tony. BBC License is a bargain and a fair tax. If you dont think so, go live in counties without BBC a see what you get with lowest common denominator TV. The very existance of the BBC keeps quality standards so much higher than they would otherwise be.
    Dont forget that quality Radio and Internet are also provided free at the point of use and we are the Envy of the world.
    Cheers Chris :)


  167. Trevor Harris Says:

    I think Tony and Chrislayeruk are a little out of date here. It may be true that we were once the “Envy of the world” but this is no longer true. For the last 6 months I have looked though the TV Guide to find very little of interest to watch. The BBC now consists mainly of repeats and programs designed for people with an IQ of zero. There are the odd exceptions but these are very rare now. Even the BBC Trust has described BBC 1 as boring.


  168. Richard Crichton Says:

    @159 “Sadly Freesat is the new Betamax!!!”

    Don’t think so. It’s an alternative service for people with limited or no Freeview access to help in the digital switch over.
    It’s not supposed to be a pay TV substitute or be in competition with Freeview.
    More HD could be accomodated by using the red button link like ITV1 HD or moving from DVB-S to DVB-S2 which is supported by Freesat HD boxes so your lack of space argument is not valid. The only reason ITV has done what it’s done is MONEY, end of.


  169. Tony Hales Says:

    Most TV is boring to people who have better things to do. Paying through the nose for it does not change that.
    Summer TV was always pretty dull. Nothing has changed there.


  170. Tony Hales Says:

    oops……. should have been @166 not @167


  171. Chrislayeruk Says:

    Did I mention Radio Trevor Harris? I think I did. As I type I am listening to BBC Radio 7 and have been most of the day. This I can get on Freesat, Freeview and DAB also the internet and listen again on various platforms, Wii Squeezebox and on Computer plus many internet radio’s.

    This alone is worth the licence Fee to me.
    There is a world beyond TV, but on the whole, the BBC seems to do best in catering for a wide variety of tastes across many platforms, including for those with an IQ of Zero, who also pay a license fee.

    Not as out of touch as might be believed, Chris :)


  172. Al (Original) Says:

    @Dave 162, Not everyone wants or can afford pay tv. I for one much prefer the license system as at least then there’s some control over the fee amount and you’re not penalised for the amount of tv you watch – often those who can least afford it – the lederly / unemployed / ill watch the most but can afford the least.

    That said, I’m not entirely happy with the way the license fee is spent. It seems there is now a Freeview mafia within the government that ensures Freeview gets funding when Freesat does not.

    What the BBC really need to do is change their opinion about the role of Freesat.

    Whilst ever they continue to see it as a fall back for Freeview they’re stuffed as an organisation because Freeview is simply out of bandwidth options and with the advent of 3D, of which Daniel Naggler is apparently head of also, what are they going to do? 3D requires 25-30mbs of bandwidth per channel as I understand it if you go for any kind of quality of transmission.

    Even taking 3D out of the equation there’s no room for any more HD on Freeview.

    There needs to be a realisation that Freesat has become the premier option going forward. Freeview still has a role but what the BBC need to do is re-launch Freesat as a new quality channel to save face so that it can sit alongside Freeview with Freeview as the easy to receive ordinary tv option and Freesat as the new high quality option for the customer who’s prepared to spend more on installation.

    Why do I say this?

    Well simply because with some changes to narrowfootprint availability through shuffling, Freesat has the room going fowards to not only tranmsit at high quality but to also expand the number of HD channels and also host 3D channels should that be deemed a mainstream option further down the line.

    So Freesat has options for the future, Freeview does not as codec improvements are unlikely in my opion to ever yield enough bandwdith to keep up with the growth of HD channels and 3D.

    The time is well overdue to realise this and take full advantage of Freesat before its too late and more channels are lost. HD is only ever going to go one way and thats up in terms of the number of channels transmitting that way. 3d may or may not make an appearance but if it does then theres only one broadcast medium that can accomodate it, satellite.

    The writing is on the wall and the BBC Trust need to re-evaluate Freesat’s roles as a mere Freeview fallback or face losing ever more channels to other broadcasters.

    Building a successful platformn is the other way in which channels will be retained through customer numbers and thus advertising revenues. At present Freeview has the customers but not the bandwdith to retain all of the new channels that are launching. Freesat can have the space to accomodate the new channels but doesn’t have the customer numbers to be sufficiently attractive to many advertisers. A rethink of Freesat’s role however and a re-launch with advertising as a new showcase service may well help boost Freesat to sufficient customers to enable it to fulfill both requirements to keep new channels. Freeview on the other hand can’t change its bandwdith position except by codec improvements and thus is forever in an impossible position with regards to satisying both demands. Yes codec improvements are on the way, but given the number of channels going HD (there’s 3 new itv ones alone as we know) and given the advent of 3D at 25-30mbs, there’s no real way I can see that Freeview can ever keep up.

    The other option, internet tv is unreliable and always will be because of the nature of the internet and the number of connections between the source and the consumer. To me as many other customers, absolute picture reliability is a must. A picture that drops out or pauses regularly is not a picture most can watch, especially when a sat glitch or weather interruption may occur once every 6 months compared to internet problems many times a day.


  173. Neil Says:

    I suggest those who regularly post on here and have strong feelings, especially those as Al has mentioned above in respect of how the BBC view Freesat in terms of an overall platform make contact with the BBC Trust to air their opinions:

    I’m going to put something in writing to them myself.


  174. Dave Leek Says:

    @ 164 Tony
    You, on your side of the coin, are one of many many households that see the Government Tax (TV License Fee) which funds the multinational corporation known as the BBC an excellent value.

    What about the other side: A person living alone, no children, on fixed and limited means whose only wish is to watch ITV 1.
    The only programme watched is their favourite Soap, the weather forecast and occasionally the early evening news.
    So watching one commercial channel
    (funded by adverts and commercial enterprise)
    that person has to pay the same £145 or be CRIMINALIZED.
    (please don’t tell me that’s their choice)

    There have been many opinion polls to gauge the feelings of the general public.
    The question usually follow the form: Should the BBC continue to be funded from the licence fee or the licence fee be replaced with other source of funding.

    The results might surprise you.

    C.A.L. is an old site but worth a look.
    Page 6 of 7. “The Human Cost of the Licence Fee – the untold story”

    @ 171 Al (Original)
    I so agree with your opening remark (see above) This Nation of ours is long over due playing second fiddle to the commercial giants and I include all the providers in that comment. Television, at whatever level you wish to use it, is a household feature enjoyed by the majority of people and should be controlled, supplied, by a National Facility funded from general taxation. Its profits from the people (Mega Bucks) should be for the benefit of the people. Freesat at present is just a facility that picks up middle ground money until such times as Pay Channels entice you to spend more. I’ve always expected to pay for what I want, I was brought up to believe if it’s free there’s a catch.

    @172 Neil
    Bet of luck – post your reply
    (I’ll try and get the Turkey’s to vote for Christmas)


  175. Phil Owens Says:

    @170 Chrislayeruk
    Err! sorry if this is a stupid question, but what is Wii squeeze box.?


  176. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    You can get BBC iPlayer on a Nintendo Wii. Very useful because the Wii uses Wifi unlike my Freesat box for which you need a cable.


  177. Phil Owens Says:

    @176 Kevin..
    Yeah, I use the iPlayer on my Wii, picture quality is quite good. Hope one day someone adds wifi to a Freesat box…


  178. Tony Hales Says:

    @177 Phil

    Technisat do a wireless network adaptor for their excellent HDFS box.


  179. Neil Says:

    Dave #164 – you claim to be on limited income “and only watch ITV1” but in previous posts further up say your happy to pay Murdoch £400PA for pay TV.

    I find it unbelievable those who are happy to let their Monthly direct debit go out to Sky for up to £51, meanwhile these also seem to be the same people who moan about “scrapping the licence fee”.

    The BBC is a National institution. I suggest you take a trip to the US and look at the utter dross on the hundreds of television channels over there. Believe me the UK gets the cream of the US programming crop, the rest is beyond belief! Do you really want TV in the UK to end up like this?


  180. Chrislayeruk Says:

    I Use a Cable to MY Wii for BBC iplayer. You need a special usb Lan adapter, (not all of them work).
    Phill, A “Logitech Squeezebox” is an Internet Radio and computer library Music Player. With plenty off apps, like BBC iplayer, wireless or LAN. I use Lan as its reliable.
    Dave Leek, you may be able to get help with the LIcense if your circumstances are as bad as you say. Talk to your local MP if not, we pay them enough.
    I am not saying the license fee is perfect and may well need a re-structure, but its served its purpose very well up to now and we lead the world in quality TV Radio and Internet.
    I for one dislike adverts breaking up programs.
    Also, no license fee…No BBC…even more expensive TV in the long term…..No support for minority interests…no incentive to maintain quality for the good of all.
    Simply put, the quality will go down for everyone, even those least well off in society.
    Cheers Chris :)


  181. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    @ Chrislayeruk 180

    I don’t Dave was claiming to be a single person living on their own with a limited income. The fact he pays £400 pa for Sky and has a motor home proves he is not on limited means. I think he was using it an emotional comment in order to attack the license fee.

    I have to agree with your other comments regarding the license fee. I listen to Radio 4 and would be most annoyed if they introduced ads.


  182. Dex Says:

    This was the final straw for me… I’ve sold my Foxsat pvr on ebay… It was gone in a few hours! Sold it for £175. More than enough to cover costs of changing to Virgin Media ( £49 for Virgin + HD Pvr + 35 Instillation) there getting new HD channels every week! For now I’ll settle with doubling my HD channels… BBC HD – ITV HD – C4 HD – 5 HD. for just fiver a month. Total £60 a year. But if i’m happy after a few months I may upgrade to tenner a month for extra hd channels like FILM4 HD and Discovery etc… Will let you know if was worth the change… Gutted I spent £360 last december changing from freeview to Freesat HD…. Gutted.


  183. Tony Says:

    @174 Dave…

    Obviously you don’t agree with the license fee ..
    Let’s go back a few years when we only had the five basic channels.. Did anyone then moan about this fee . Absolutely NOT. All this getting rid of the fee didn’t start until SKY came along..

    Remember the old football league before sky got there hands on it… It worked very well as it was either on the BBC or ITV.

    The likes of SKY have ruined our treasured league putting alot of clubs into financial ruin, so I do not agree with peoples arguments about subscriptions means better.. better for who? yes we know who. Mr I want to run television and make everyone pay ! The same man that doesnt agree with free tv !

    The quality of programming on the old five channels far out weigh all the garbage sky puts out on its never ending list. At the end of the day you can only watch one channel at a time.. or should I say one repeat at a time.

    I still cant get my head around a sky plus box.. Why record it when you can watch the same programme the following night or in some cases an hour later.. What a joke. Oh and nearly forgot if you stop subscribing the box becomes idle anyway! or in other words unusable ! What you have saved you’ve lost.

    Best of luck to all you subscribers….


  184. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    Are the Sky subscribers getting value for money? They have around 10 m subscribers paying an average of £500 pa. That is around £5 billion in subs of which around £1.1 billion is spent on marketing. I dare say if the BBC spent over 20% of the license fee on marketing Murdoch’s press would be the first to complain.


  185. Alan Says:

    @ 184 – It would be fine to complain if the BBC did that but Sky is a private company and they can do what they want.

    If they have 10m customers then they must think that they are getting a good deal for what they pay out each month.

    Different services give are suitable for different people – for me Freesat is perfect, but if someone wants Sky/Virgin/Freeview then that is fine with me as well.


  186. Roger Says:

    Whats the big deal about “HD” anyway?

    Like “3D”, its pure marketing hype put out by Sky to justify demanding huge subscription fees for packages filled with third rate programmes and upscaled elderly repeats. “HD” dross is still dross. Sky “HD” ads are particularly misleading, with their comparison between simulated “SD” and “HD” images, especially when delivered on ordinary TV. In short, a switch from “SD” to “HD” is mainly consumer mugging by service providers similar to that perpetrated by the blu-ray gang.

    The US experience, comparing its archaic NTSC 525 (480i) system with “HD” is a valid increase in quality; the difference between PAL 625 (576i) and “HD” is far less clear cut.

    In most situations, there’s very little visible difference between images in “SD” and “HD” on the same screen, those who claim to spot such a difference are in the same camp as extreme audiophiles who are desperate to justify the huge expenditure they put into their systems.

    Nevermind, the Murdoch empire will get its way eventually, if people keep falling for the hype and Sky throws a fifth of its income into marketing and a lot of the remainder into buying up sports, US nature documentaries and old films.



  187. Alan Says:

    @186 – if HD is done properly then you can certainly tell the difference from a normal SD feed, especially on a bigger screen TV.

    It’s not ‘consumer mugging’ – you don’t have to have it, but I do like to view programmes, and especially films in HD as it usually gives a clearer and more vibrant picture.

    I have Bluray as well and don’t feel mugged as I like and enjoy the better quality of the picture.


  188. Tony Hales Says:

    @185 Alan
    Sky is a public company not a private company. They exist to make money for their shareholders.Anyone can buy shares in Sky.
    Ofcom says jump and Sky say how high.


  189. Paul S Watts Says:

    Well, this debate has certainly rumbled on. So time for a bit fun from my favourite spoof news site:



  190. Tony Hales Says:

    @186 Roger “In most situations, there’s very little visible difference between images in “SD” and “HD” on the same screen, those who claim to spot such a difference are in the same camp as extreme audiophiles who are desperate to justify the huge expenditure they put into their systems.”

    Rubbish. The SD is being upscaled by the box and the screen so you are not seeing as much of a difference as you otherwise would.
    The bigger the screen the more noticeable the difference. If you have a projector and a large screen HD and Blu-ray is a must have and the Blu-ray sound is lossless unlike DVD sound which is heavily compressed.


  191. Richard Crichton Says:

    @189 Paul
    It will be part of another package so no option. They have already found the idiots willing to pay called Sky.
    Anyone know how much Sky are paying ITV Broadcasting as they now call themselves. Sold their soul for pieces of silver.


  192. Dan Says:

    Sky Sports news is pulling out from freeview, and the channel will become Sky3+1


  193. Tony Says:

    & Dan 192,
    This has been known for quite a while , does anyone watch this channel anyway? The BBC do a fantastic job giving all the latest results etc on a saturday afternoon , thats when you need a channel such as this , not rammed down your throat 24/7 when important news is thread through news channels anyway . All sky sports news does is repeat itself every hour , or in some cases every 30 mins , not a great loss and not one which will make customers flock to pay just to watch this in HD , who wants to see close ups of the presenters in great detail.. I think I will give it a miss !


  194. Richard Crichton Says:


  195. bigal Says:

    @75 Admin

    Good News to my ears.

    I agreed with another poster for a ban on posts from aybeesea a while back in a different thread. He/She does not seem to have much to add.

    Regarding the subject on this thread. In my opinion the main benefit of HD on ITV 4 will be football. Of course we all have our likes/dislikes of certain types of programme.

    Someone on here stated that they only watch Simon Cowell type shows on ITV (Britains got talent etc) I watched one once, never again as I don’t think that Britain has got talent if that was the best they could come up with. Oh well, we are all different. Thank heavens for the BBC, Though they should resist trying to ‘Copy’ ITV shows of the Cowell type. Just my opinion.


  196. Russ Says:

    In principle this really annoys me. I say in principle because I do not think ITV3 & ITV4 really show anything worth watching in SD let alone HD so I do not watch those channels. What annoys me about it is, Freesat was a joint venture between BBC & ITV and it was really quick to use its exclusiveness of ITV1 HD (when it was exclusive to Freesat) as a promotional tool and now ITV have sold out to SKY (as most will see it.) Where it was once ITV HD only available on Freesat it is now ITV2,3 & 4 HD only available on Sky. If SKY thinks that will encourage people to rush out a buy one of their HD packages then more fool them.

    I have not had my Freesat for the past 3 months whilst I have been staying with friends whilst I look for a flat, and to be honest I have not really missed it. To me Freesat has been a disappointment and before anyone says it. Yes I know its original purpose was to guarantee everyone can receive the main channels after the switch over as not everyone can receive Freeview, but do those people not have the right to be able to receive the main HD channels too without having to subscribe to SKY?


  197. Tony Hales Says:

    @196 Russ
    It depends on how you define main HD channels. I don’t think you could describe ITV 2,3 and 4 as main. BBC1 is the most watched channel and BBC1 HD will probably be the most watched HD channel. It will be on Freesat.
    If the deal with $ky means more HD and better shows on ITV1 HD I don’t mind them taking a wedge from Sly to finance it. Where are they going to get the HD shows from to fill three extra HD channels when they can’t even fill one?
    BTW ITV1 HD was never exclusive to Freesat anyone with a decent FTA HD box could receive it.


  198. PETER DIXON Says:

    this is the result of the UK government ,as usual on SO many issues,sitting on its hands.allowing the BBC to collar all the licence fee,while overpaying their executives astronomical salaries,overpaying “STARS” like J.ROSS,£7,000,000, AYEAR!!!! meanwhile the ITV companies flounder…no wonder they choose to opt out,they had little choice.the same applies to DAB radio, slowly de-composing (POOR COVERAGE) .the feeling is DAB was not the best system,in the first place,who does the BBC employ to give “EXPERT ” guidance?? I think living in BRITAIN,,these days,is like being in a MONTY PYTHON SKETCH!!


  199. bigal Says:

    @ 183 Tony

    I also remember the old football league before sky got there hands on it. Here is my sorry tale about $ky TV.

    When BSB and $ky merged $ky Sports was created. Before the merger my family subscribed to $ky Movies via analogue. Remember that anyone?.

    As an existing subscriber I was contacted out of the blue by $ky and offered 12 months $ky Sports for the introductory price of £50.00. I sent $ky a cheque for £50.00 (Full payment for 12 months) and asked them to send me a separate viewing card as I had installed a separate system in my sons bedroom as my wife & I wanted to watch movies downstairs.

    When the 12 months was over $ky sent me a letter stating that I had to pay them over £100.00 (Can’t remember the exact figure) for a further 12 months sport.

    I phoned $ky and told them that I did not want to renew the Sports card but did want to retain the card for movies. Then things got a bit nasty.

    $ky told me that the Sports card was a “Rolling Contract” and as such I MUST pay the requested amount otherwise they would take me to court.

    Can you believe this?. I informed them to take me to court as I did not sign up to a Rolling Contract, I signed and paid for 12 months sport.

    While on the phone to $ky I also told them to cancel my movies subscription as well.

    So on that sorry day $ky lost my custom and that has remained the case ever since. How long has $ky Digital been running? Because I have never subscribed to $ky Digital and I NEVER WILL because of what I consider to be $kys sharp practices.

    Others on here have mentioned “Churn”. Why is it I wonder that $ky Sports can charge a Pub or Club some extortionate amount for their channels when a domestic subscriber pays a fraction of the cost? Answer: PURE GREED.

    The Pub Churn where I live is unbelievable and no wonder.
    $ky have this mystical formula for calculating how many thousands of pounds a Pub pays them per month for their Sports channels.

    As I said at the start of this post.

    I remember the old football league before sky got there hands on it and it was much better back then.


  200. Terence Says:

    IF you must pay sky for your extra viewing and i dont see were people find the time to whatch all these gabbage channels,then call them and tell them you have lost your job and they will half price your sub.
    give them a sob story it works every time,but dont be rude.
    so if your paying over £60 a month its worth a phone call.
    i dont have sky but my friend does and he never pays the proper price.
    Im more then happy with my humax hdr and when BBC1 goes full hd who cares about loads of channels that you dont what anyway.
    come on lads what would you like most 3 page three girls or 40 fat girls


  201. Chrislayeruk Says:

    When all is said and done………All is “Said and Done”. :)


  202. Tony Says:

    @ Bigal 199

    I know of many people in the past getting this sort of treatment. I do believe however that things have got alot better with them now , but the point I was actually getting at that football in them days seemed to mean something to the players. It doesnt anymore , Putting more money into the game by the way of subscriptions has been a disaster … trying to keep up with european jones’s springs to mind. Players are now over paid and play worse than school kids!
    No commitment , what happened to likes of stuart pearce for example? Do you ever see a player now with so much enthusiasam now , I think not .

    Give them less money and make them want to win again !
    The only way to do this is get the whole football league back on terrestrial tv !


  203. Russ Says:

    @202 Tony

    Well said.


  204. alexander c povah Says:

    Ofcom should release extra bandwith on digital terrestrial. This would allow both BBC3 & BBC4 to become 24/7 channels. Daytime programmes will be able to carry both UK and WORLD sports on BBC3 and Open University on BBC4.

    The evening slots of the children’s channels could carry BBC drama & films and joint productions with world producers.


  205. bigal Says:

    @ 202 Tony

    Sorry Tony I seem to have missed the point of your original post.

    I do agree with you though. I would give players a basic wage and a bonus for winning a match, That might do the trick.


  206. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    Loads of people on this forum slag off ITV 3 and 4, but yesterday I watched an episode of the Prisoner which despite made in the 60’s had very high production values and a brilliant script. I also watched an episode of the Sweeney which again I thought was excellent. Both these series were made on film and the Prisoner has already been remastered for HD.

    I know that I frequently watch programmes on ITV 3 and 4 but I cannot recall watching ITV 2. Maybe it it because most of ITV 2 seems to X Factor which I cannot stand.


  207. Tony Says:

    @206 Kevin ,
    I have to agree with you , I watched an old benidorm last night on ITV4 and laughed my socks off . As mentioned in one of my other posts , it seems programming on ITV3/4 is getting better by the week , Tarrant on tv was good to see again too !

    I don’t mind watching repeats if there pretty good.
    Well done ITV for the work your doing on these channels even if we don’t agree with what your’e doing with SKY .

    Keep up the good work.

    For the record , my sd versions of these channels through my panasonic tv (sat reciever) is very good. Not too bothered about them in HD after all. I must say the quality does vary a bit with freeview though .


  208. Kevin Ver1 Says:

    @ Tony 207

    Yep, I watched Tarrant on TV as well :) . Strange coincidence I also own a Panasonic TV and the picture quality via Freesat is excellent.


  209. jack Says:

    I feel this could be the beginning of the end of Freesat for HD viewing


  210. Tony Says:

    @ Jack..
    I was feeling pretty down last week about the ITV channels but look on the bright side .. things can only get better.. Freesat now has the band width where freeview doesn’t right now.. So Freesat will always have the edge when HD becomes the norm…


  211. Russ Says:

    I think OFCOM should look at this situation.

    I think we have got to look at Freesat as it was originally intended, to ensure that the people who live in a Freeview black spot can still receive the main free channels without having to pay Sky or Virgin Media. We then need to decide what these main channels are. I would suggest that the channels currently availible on analogue would be classed as these main channels, BBC1, BBC2, ITV1, CH4 and CH5.

    Then I think we should ask what I asked in my comment @196, do the people in a Freeview black spot not have the right to be able to receive the main HD channels too, without having to subscribe to Sky or Virgin Media? Tony @197 said It depends on how you define main HD channels. Well if we agree that the above mentioned channels are the main SD channels then I would say it would be fair to say the HD variants of these channels, BBC HD, ITV1 HD, CH4 HD and CH5 HD would be classed as the main HD channels and if in the future the BBC do a dedicated BBC1 HD & BBC2 HD channels then these too. If you would class ITV2, ITV3 and ITV 4 channels as main channels even though they are not availible on analouge, but because they are ITV channels then that would be a matter of opinion.

    I honestly think that OFCOM should step in here and stop SKY from hijacking the whole system and in effect stopping Freesat from offering the people in Freeview black spot areas a decent choice of HD content.


  212. paul Says:

    There is no such thing as Free Tv in the UK……….
    You need a valid TV Licence if you use TV receiving equipment to watch or record television programmes as they’re being shown on TV. ‘TV receiving equipment’ means any equipment which is used to watch or record television programmes as they’re being shown on TV. This includes a TV, computer, mobile phone, games console, digital box, DVD/VHS recorder or any other device at a fixed address or mobile home…
    Sky subscribers pay twice, licence Fee plus Sky fee


  213. Tony Says:

    Here , Here !


  214. Tony Says:

    That was aimed a@ 211 Paul..
    Youre so right !

    @ 212 Paul ,
    Its up to SKY viewers if they want to pay a subscribtion….It’s their choice..


  215. Tony Says:

    Im going mad , I’m so sorry ,

    Here Here was for Russ @ 211 not Paul…


  216. Russ Says:

    @212 Paul

    Yes you are right we do have to pay a licence fee, that has always been the case going way back to black and white and when there was nothing else but the BBC. It also always used top cover your radios too and it is where the BBC gets its revenue from and it is why the BBC has never been allowed to sell advertising space nor offer sponsership of programs.

    Even though you have to have a TV licence, even if you were only using your TV as a PC monitor, the channels I mentioned are classed as free channels because you do not need to subscribe to watch them, they are not pay per view they are among what is called free to view channels and are classed as the main ones because they are availible via analogue terrestrial TV.

    @214 Tony

    Yes you are so right Sky viewers pay a subscription by choice and it is always what has annoyed me with Sky. Sky charge you the subscription yet they also get revenue by selling advertising space on their own channels, Sky News, Sky Sports 1 & 2, Sky 1, Sky 2 etc.


  217. Dave Leek Says:

    @ 181/184 Kevin Ver1
    Thank you for your correct understanding.
    10m (your figure) is an awful lot of people to continue paying if they DON’T
    think they are getting value for money.

    @ 180 Chrislayeruk
    Your concern was well meant and thanks.
    Talk to an MP – now there’s a thought.

    @ 196/211 Russ
    All Sky Boxes work without a subscription card, albeit reducing the number of channels to what is fondly referred to as free channels
    (Quick check more than 240)
    Think there’s more if you purchase the £20 card, a one off payment for Sky.

    My HD Box with card removed, as expected, the record/replay function is not available. It does however, retain BBC HD (Channel 140), Luxe TV HD (Channel 273) and although not on (Channel 178) the normal channel for ITV 1 HD the HD can be seen via the add channel function (latest EPG required) which comes up with channel number 10510
    (details: frequency 11.427 – V – 27.5 – 2/3)

    These boxes (without subscription) provide more (free !) TV channels than Freesat does and I suspect ever will. As for Radio – Freesat lists 37 (recently added Smooth – 38 ?) this falls short of the more than 70 Radio channels any Sky Box (without subscription) will give you.

    @183 Tony
    Yep the good ole days ! mixed feelings about that.
    I’m a back street kid who has been lucky enough to work all his life. And like yourself have seen a few changes, but for something that has it’s origin in a wireless fee of 50p (equivalent in today’s money) and grown to £3.5 BILLION each year, demanded from 98% of households using an archaic law, producing 100.000’s of prosecutions each year (majority women) all for the BBC gravy train. Their luxury spending knows no boundaries – 100’s of executives – Director General £838.000 renumeration package,
    North’s Director £193.000 for five months in post,
    Taxi £638.73 and the expense accounts…….. (fed up of the figures)

    The last time anyone brave enough to rattle the Government/BBC cage must have pricked somebody’s conscience, because what followed. A couple of concessions. (75 years or over – you may be eligible for a free TV Licence). But the biscuit of all biscuit’s – you may qualify for a 50% concession if your BLIND. Say that again ! you may be eligible for a half price TV Licence if your blind).


  218. Alan Says:

    Freesat ITV. Cheat on the public at your cost.
    The novelty of HD with so many low quatlity plus repeat programes will not work.


  219. Russ Says:

    @217 Dave Leek,

    Yes I know my sister and brother-in-law have had that for about 5 years or more, and it is what Sky decided to call Freesat from Sky when Freesat was first launched. The reasons I opted for a Humax Freesat box was because I wanted a PVR which I could use as a PVR without having to pay Sky £120.00 a year to be able to record programs plus I preferred the proper Freesat EPG as opposed to the Sky EPG which includes all the channels you can only watch with a subscription.

    This thread was originally about ITV’s announcement that it’s HD versions of ITV2,ITV3 and ITV4 will only be available as pay per view on Sky and it has gone slightly off topic and started talking about the HD content on Freesat in general. Normally when we talk about the HD content (or lack of it) on Freesat some people come to Freesat’s defence by saying Freesat was only ever intended as a free platform to ensure that people in a Freeview black spot can receive the main free channels after the digital switch over is completed and it is fulfilling that obligation. The point I was making is, do people who can’t get Freeview have the right to a fair choice of free to view HD channels as those who can get Freeview do? If the answer is yes then in my opinion Freesat has to take the responsibility to ensure they do have that choice and in my opinion those HD channels should be the HD versions of the channels available on analogue terrestrial TV, BBC HD, ITV1 HD, CH4 HD and CH5 HD.

    Now we have had with CH4 HD that it is coming to Freesat, then it isn’t because there is not enough room on Astra 2D. Then it’s coming to Freesat and then it’s not because there is not the room on Astra 2D and we have people saying that is BS there is plenty of room on Astra 2D it is Sky paying CH4 to stay encrypted.

    OK let’s say it is true there is not enough room on Astra 2D for CH4 HD and CH5 HD as they are now saying the same thing. The problem could easily be solved by Freesat working with Sky and Sky making available at a one of charge, a CAM and viewing card for Freesat users to plug into their box so as they can receive the scrambled free to view channels including the HD ones. Or they could come to an agreement that the makers of Freesat boxes such as Humax could make a Sky compatible CAM under licence. As a certain animal in a certain advert says, “Sinples.” That is not likely to happen because the more HD content there is available on Freesat the more attractive it will be and Sky won’t want that. That is why I say it is time that OFCOM stepped in and sorted it out before it is too late.


  220. bigal Says:

    @ 217 Dave Leek

    If you have a decent Freesat box like the Humax etc you can perform a Manual Tune and then switch between Fresat and Non Freesat mode.

    All the channels and Radio stations are then available So The Dirty Diggers Sky Box is not giving people anything extra.


  221. Graham Says:

    I have Virgin HD , Sky HD
    and FreesatHD I use a Humax box and I like the ease of Control
    BBC1HD will be good meaning BBCHD original channel
    can start showing Films more.

    Ch5HD is on Virgin and Sky
    but only with some in HD so far.

    I use all three systems on many TV’s


  222. ASK Says:

    @ Dave Leek 217

    No such thing as a one off payment with Sky. I paid £16 a few years ago, was asked recently for £20 keep my free channels.


  223. Dave Leek Says:

    @219 Russ
    Freesat as I understand it was launched to complement Freeview so that, as a consequence of the DSO, everyone, well almost everyone would have an option to continue receiving SD TV. That achieved the obligation has been met.

    HD on a free platform is surely a bonus. Something which may or may not influence the decision (if you have one) which digital direction you adopt.


  224. Dave Leek Says:

    @ 222 ASK
    Sorry poor choice of words.
    Payment (oops ! now £25) lasts for duration of issue. (2 – 3 years) although
    the predecessor (Blue) of the current White card was much longer. I saw it reported the hackers in 2003 caused one of the changes.


  225. byfo Says:

    Roll on next year when the Digital Switchover comes in, and I can get Freeview.
    I thought Freesat was a deal between ITV & BBC. The Beeb are doing okay, but as for ITV,Rubbish! I certainly won’t be paying for ITV.

    Oh, What happened to ITV Iplayer on Freesat?


  226. SKYDOER Says:

    Personally i see that freesat will go the same road as OnDigital, in other words it has no future.
    Its channel lineup is poor to say the least, channels available on Freeview still not on Freesat.
    HD well, two channels is that the best they can do and whats the point of simulcast stations, if its going to be HD have something different give the viewers something to watch other than the same old rubbish.
    As for ITV2/3/4 HD they can shove it. I notice that ITV2/3/4 are showing a few more films lately, just a ploy to get the paid subscribers to part with money, then switch back to the old s**t.
    For me i’ll pay the £20 fee to FreesatFromSky, at least i’ll get the xtra channels which should be on the Freesat lineup.


  227. Terence Says:

    dont sky still own a very big stake in itv


  228. Terence Says:

    just so i no whats the cheapest it costs to get ch4 & ch 5 hd on sky
    dont have sky at moment. and would not want any other channels either


  229. SKYDOER Says:


    All you need is a Sky HD Box, you can pick a cheap one up on Ebay then get a FreeSatFromSky card at a cost of £20.


  230. Tony Says:

    @226 SKYDOER
    Freesat has a very bright future ! It has a far better platform than freeview , due to lack of bandwith freeview won’t be able to expand much more until more space becomes available.
    As for SKY , its totally in a different position to Freesat. SKY will always have the better choice of channels., but’s its up to the viewer if they want to part with their hard earned cash.
    When HD channels become the norm which they will eventually Freesat will have more room to take them up (not like freeview).
    SKY will always have the edge but if you want a good variety at no cost then Freesat is a very good alternative . As for ITV 2/3/4 the SD picture quality is pretty good on the Freesat platform so it’s not such great loss missing out on them in HD.
    As for freesat from SKY there isnt a great deal of difference , maybe a few extra music & shopping channels but that’s about it and if you have a decent freesat box you can do a manual scan and tune most of these in anyway !


  231. Terence Says:

    thanks skydoer @229


  232. Alan Says:

    @ SkyDoer – You don’t seem to be able to grasp that Freesat was setup so that people that won’t ever be able to receive Freeview will still have access to the PSB channels, which are the BBC channels, ITV (only ITV1) and Channel 4 which are all available on Freesat. That is all it was setup for and it provides.

    Anyone thinking that all of a sudden loads of free HD channels are going to be show are mistaken. HD channels are more expensive to run, but don’t get any extra advertising revenue which is why they stay on Sky where they get extra money from subscriptions.

    In years to come Freesat may come into its own as channels start moving to being HD only when people start expecting a channel to be HD rather than as an add on to an existing channel as Freesat will have the extra bandwidth for this which Freeview will never have.

    But at the moment Freesat soes what it does and in my opinion it does it well and I am very happy with it and have no complaints.


  233. Al (Original) Says:

    @186 Roger, if you can’t see a difference between SD and HD then you either have bad eyesight or a very small tv. On a 42″ (now the most popular size) the difference is very visible on most programmes. On 50″ or above, which are increasing in popularity even more so. The main thing you notice about HD is the sharpness not just close up but in the sense that HD enjoys a much better Depth of Field. ie the picture tends to be razor sharp front to back unless the background is deliberately thrown out of focus by aperture settings. SD by comparison is softer on the item thats the subject of focus, and then rapidly loses sharpness throughout the entire depth of field meaning that most of the picture is blurred. TBH it was even more visible befoer the BBC reduced BBC HD’s bit rate and quality allegedly dropped along with it.

    As for 3D being another load of rubbish, we’ll have to wait and see.

    But have you actually tried it before rubbishing it? I test drove a 50″ Panasonic 3D tv with shutter glasses at my local Panasonic dealer using their demo disc “Canyons”. It was totally amazing.

    The glasses much to my surprise were totally comfortable and the experience was immersive. It wasn’t so much about 3D gimics coming out of the screen at you as a 3D stage stretching back into the wall. Nothing like the old red and blue glasses stuff. The 3D effect was 1000 times deeper and more realistic. I went there critically minded expecting to hate to and came away loving it!! I’d definately buy into it if the content was there.

    @190 Tony, we agree!

    @206 Alexander, “Why don’t they release more bandwdith for Freeview to use..”

    – because they haven’t got any!!!!

    Most of the bandwidth spectrum is taken up with other services such as Emergency services, Commercial radio, Air Traffic Control etc etc. The terrestrial spectrum has been jam packed for years. The only spare bandwidth I’m aware of being available was that being freed from analogue tv post switch over, and the government sold that off to commercial radio broadcasters to make money.

    Thats why I understand there’s only Freesat thats able to expand. The only real gains available to DTT are through more efficient codecs or quality (bit rate) reduction but at the current rate of HD expansion and with SuperVision and 3D on the horizon, these are unlikely to keep up with the demand in my opinion.


  234. Pete Says:

    Wow on the buses in HD


  235. Brian Williams Says:

    as someone in their 50s who has become completely disenchanted with >90% of TV programming, this is inconsequential to me.

    Where I live, TV is only feasible on satellite. I had an old Sky set on freeview only, and replaced it with a Humax Freesat.

    I record the very few programmes that I watch for convenience. Since they are usually wildlife or historical dramas (the only things that the BBC still do well, ), it came as no surprise that I only needed one LNB.

    ITV has almost always been an irrelevance. The few quality programmes they produce don’t last as it is a channel of populist twaddle.

    More and more I rely on dvd/bluray rental companies, not only for film but also for TV series devoid of adverts and mockney voiceovers.

    I look forward to the day when I can replace my TV with a monitor, rip out my satellite dish and cancel my TV licence – I have yet to persuade my wife, unfortunately, but I feel sure the day will come.


  236. Eric Wray Says:

    I think that this news from ITV regarding HD channels exclusively with Sky, confirms my thoughts that, as a Freesat user, the enterprise is now doomed. We are going to be stuck with only BBC1 HD and ITV almost/sometimes HD and no more. Unless something is done, there is little chance that there will be any new HD channels appearing. I would suggest that people, when they realise this is the case will cease to buy Freesat equipment and Rupert Murdoch will have won again !
    I welcome a response from someone in authority in the Freesat organisatiion, who can refute my claims. I will take a non-reply as an admission that I am right





  238. Alan Says:

    @236 Eric – Freesat was setup so that people who could not receive Freeview even after the digital switch over were still able to receive the PSB TV stations. This aim has already been acheived – HD channels will always be a bonus and not something to be expected. Also Freesat is not designed to rival Sky and never will do so there is nothing to win or lose.

    Expecting someone from Freesat to reply to you on here and saying that if they do not reply means you are right just gave me a laugh this evening as it’s just such a daft thing to say! 😉


  239. Peter Says:

    There have been many statements made in the preceding comments that may or may not be true. The only statement that is undeniable is that Freesat, and Freesat HD were intended to allow all viewers in the UK access to Digital TV.

    I understand that the BBC lowered the Quality of Freesat HD to match the quality of Freeview HD.

    Stations like Luxe HD seem to be shut out of Freesat HD because they will never be available via Freeview HD.

    Because of the lack of available Bandwidth to Freeview HD, it is highly unlikely that there will be available Bandwidth to accomodate ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4 on Freeview HD.

    If Freesat were to become a carbon copy of Freeview wouldn’t that be an opportunity missed? I think that if the free to air TV is available outside of Freesat by re-tuning to a standard DVB configuration, shouldn’t Freesat be striving to make it available within Freesat too?


  240. alex Says:

    @ 236 eric

    One way to put ITV in shame is to ensure that state owned Channel 4 and daily express owned Channel 5 place HD versions of all their channels on FREESAT.

    The same goe’s for the BBC, in that it can place HD version of all their channels on FREESAT. Another benefit is that 24/7 versions of BBC3 & 4 and evening slots after children being used for Open Ununversity, BBC Sport, BBC Drama & Film and learning on trial on FREESAT.


  241. Jock Says:

    #240 – alex

    Do you live in cloud cuckoo land? What on earth is the point of putting ITV to shame? They are a commercial organisation without a viable business plan at the moment. If they don’t find some way of balancing their books they could go out of business. Or be taken over by $ky.

    All they have done is to give exclusive rights to $ky to a few HD channels which do not exist yet. When they come into being, it looks as though they will offer HD simulcasts of SD channels which will continue to be available to us. They are mainly multi-repeats of “mature” programmes or American imports with no obvious HD pedigree. Would you want to watch The Professionals yet again, simply because it has been upscaled? And, when you see what the Daily Express owner does to Channel 5, you might not even want to watch it in SD.

    Get real, fellas! More HD will come to Freesat when the providers see commercial benefit in doing so.


  242. Alistair G. Says:

    Bang goes my access to the BTCC coverage in HD. Virgin SD box SA4200 is the only virgin box that you can record programs from (on my Pioneer DVR-545LX) and it’s downstairs where my Mum watches it, I have freeview upstairs and no SkyHD. Was hoping to have it on FreeSat. Very dissappointed.


  243. Jason Says:

    What’s to stop Sky contracting exclusive deals with all the channels and leaving us with almost nothing that is included/’free’? It seems only BBC Channels are all we’re entitled to with the license fee. Doesn’t seem right to me. Doesn’t advertising pay for these channels any more so they need to make these deals? Pay for the channels AND watch adverts? No thanks.


  244. Ian Says:

    Having just built my house with inwall cabling for 5 x wall mounted Freesat televisions, I have read all the comments on this site with great interest ! I had hoped to be future proofing the property (as I did in 2001 with a Sony integrated ‘On Digital’ set). Last week I purchased 3 x LG Freesat LF 7700 sets but now understand that LG is happy to either refund them or offer a free Freesat box as the future proof promise of possible iplayer on the t.v will not happen. I too cannot understand the logic of paying for subscription t.v and having to watch an increasing number of adverts.
    LG appear to now be in bed with £ky and have ditched Freesat in favour of Freeview.
    Bottom line is I fear Freeview HD integrated sets may be less of a financial risk for me.


  245. nick Says:

    someone mentioned something about ‘why would someone get freesat hd over free view hd’ well i cant get a signal for freeview and what i get on freesat is better than freeview hd or not. agree on more hd channels needed though. i dont care about itv 3/4 but itv2 would be nice.


  246. John Says:

    Personally, I’d dump the ITV channels to the bottom end of the EPG on Freeview and Freesat – see how much they enjoy their darl alliegence with Sky then. If ITV want no part in the FTA market then fair enough, down the EPG you go to be replaced by others who do.


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