CanalDigitaal, the Dutch pay TV satellite provider, is switching off standard definition versions of the main public service channels and moving them to Astra 3B.
This major shake up in Dutch satellite broadcasting will affetv all customers, and will affect channels including NPO1, 2, 3, RTL4, 5, 7, Net 5 and SBS6. These are currently broadcast encrypted via Astra 1L at 19.2 degrees East across Europe.
In 2016, these channels will be switched off, in favour of HD-only transmissions using the Astra 3B satellite at 23.5 degrees East.
With the change, all channels will use the DVB-S2 MPEG4 broadcast standards, so customers using SD receivers will require new HD receivers to continue to watch these channels,.
The changes coincide with an increase in subscription charges. Canal Digitaal’s Family HD pack will go up €2 a month and the cost of having additional viewing cards is set to increase by €5 a month to €9.50 from January 2016. It’s not possible to receive the main NPO public service channels free-to-air on satellite, which protects the public broadcasters from broadcast rights issues with copyright holders.