There seem to be more confusion about the future of UK Satellite TV on the Costa Blanca and Spain, so I hope the following helps to calm nerves and help with some of the truths, lies, facts and rumours that are going around at the moment about “loss of UK TV in Spain!” and the “UK TV Switch off”.
Yes there are changes happening to UK TV via satellite.
No you will not lose ALL UK TV, and changes are NOT happening in July 2013!
Basically some of the previous satellites used for UK TV are old and need replacing.
The first new satellite, Astra 2F, is already up and working. Since December 2012 it has been transmitting some UK TV channels on its “UK beam” such as C4HD, 4seven and Channel 5.
The second new satellite, Astra 2E, was expected to be launched on the 20th July 2013, and be operational and transmitting channels from September. However a failed launch of another rocket at the launch site in Kazakhstan on the 2nd July will mean that the launch will inevitably be delayed, for about two to three months.
When the channels moved to the first new satellite, Astra 2F, some areas such as the Costa del Sol lost reception of these channels on their current satellite dishes. In other areas, such as between Valencia and Alicante there has been no noticeable change in reception. This proves that reception characteristics vary a lot in Spain, making it hard to generalize on reception across Spain.
No-one will know what reception of the second new satellite, Astra 2E, will be like in Spain, and the size of satellite dish required to receive those TV channels on its “UK beam” until the satellite is actually launched, tested, positioned, operational and transmitting channels. It may be that reception of Astra 2E may be similar to Astra 2F. It may be that you simply need a larger satellite dish to the one you are currently using. It has been said that if you can currently receive Channel Five from the first new satellite, then you should be able to receive the channels from the second new satellite, but no-one can actually say until it happens.
However, you should not lose ALL UK TV and all Sky TV channels when the satellite change over happens.
Firstly, some of the UK TV channels are on a satellite that is not part of the change over, and so their reception should not be affected.
Secondly, many of the Sky Pay channels may be transmitted from the new satellites “European beams”, just as they are today, and have been in the past. These European beams tend to be more easily available in most areas of mainland Spain, and so again, their reception should not be affected.
There are some people suggesting that if you subscribe to Sky HD pay package, you will not be affected by these changes and you will not lose your BBC and ITVs. This is incorrect, as channels Like BBC, ITV and C4 are all “free to air”, available subscription free, even without a viewing card.
It does seem that a lot of these “you will lose all UK TV IN Spain” scaremongering tends to come from companies and individuals who are selling IPTV / internet TV. Yes, for some people in Spain IPTV / internet TV may be the only solution. However, if you are in area where you can still receive the UK TV channels direct from the satellite, then you will benefit from having the main UK TV channels available subscription free and in high definition. Live UK TV streaming from the internet tends to have a much lower resolution than standard and high definition TV from satellites. And this is more noticeable when used on larger screen TVs, where the image is not as sharps as it should be.
The Sat and PC Guy has been installing and maintaining satellite and television systems for the Costa Blanca North since 2003. We cover between Calpe to Valencia and inland areas including Alcoy and Ontinyent. We are able to supply and install a range of dishes, from 80cm to 2.4 meter satellite dishes, and digital satellite receivers, including Freesat, and Sky HD digiboxes. We also supply and install TV aerials for the reception of Spanish digital TV.
Whether you require a satellite or Spanish TV system installing, your existing system upgraded or serviced, or more information contact The Sat and PC Guy on 96 281 9796 / 620 130 292 or see our website: www.satandpcguy.com or our blog : www.satandpcguy.com/blog or on Facebook: www.facebook.com/satandpcguy