Aug 092014

We regularly contribute to a local Javea publication, the Javea Grapevine, with the latest news, and views with regards to satellite TV and reception of UK TV in Javea.

This was an article in the June publication.


You may have often heard about Freeview, Freesat, Free to air and free to view. But do you know what they mean? Many people and even some satellite installers are often confused about their meaning, and can mean people buying the wrong type of equipment.

Freeview is the name of the consortium that operated the UK’s digital terrestrial TV service. It is transmitted from land based masts, and received by a TV aerial. Freeview IS NOT available in Spain. The Freeview signals simply do not reach into Spain. Freeview is not available via a satellite dish. You cannot connect a Freeview box to a satellite dish and expect to watch UK TV – they are two different incompatible systems.

Spain does not have an equivalent of Freeview (the consortium), but it does have a digital terrestrial TV service – TDT. It offers about 40 channels via a TV aerial, and has the bonus where most UK and USA imported programmes have their original English audio available as well as the “dubbed” Spanish audio.

Freesat is the name of the satellite TV service which offers access to the free TV channels, many of which are on Freeview. Freesat is only available on official Freesat receivers. You cannot get Freesat on a Sky box, although the channels on Freesat are also available on a Sky box (even with no viewing card).

Free to air channels are channels that are available free of encryption (so no viewing card is required) and subscription free. They are available on Freesat and Sky boxes. Examples include BBC channels.

Free to view is not “Freeview”. Free to view channels are channels that encrypted (so a viewing card is required) but are subscription free. Free to view channels are not available on Freesat. They are available on a Sky box. Examples include Sony Movies, Motors TV and LFCTV.

Why do I mention this? Well I often hear of people saying “bring a Freeview box to Spain and use it on your dish to get channels” and “connect your Freeview box to your dish” and “you can get Freeview in Spain”. Over the years I have been called out to people who, based on what they have heard and understood, have brought a Freeview box to Spain and confused as to why a) it will not work with a satellite dish, and b) it only gets Spanish TV channels and no UK channels!

End of cheap (and illegal) Sky TV?

Some installers have been selling systems that can access the full Sky TV package, for a lot less than the official Sky monthly charges. They do this by selling access to illegal cardsharing systems. A satellite receiver, usually an Iberosat or Ariva, is connected via the internet to a server that provides the access codes to unlock the Sky TV channels.

Obviously illegal, but probably not mentioned by the installer.

However, recently if you are using such systems you will have noticed that about a dozen Sky HD channels are no longer available via this system – Sky One HD being one such channel.

It is expected over the coming months ALL Sky HD channels, and maybe even the SD Sport and Movie channels, will have their encryption upgraded, meaning these channels are no longer available on cardsharing systems.

This is because Sky, and other pay TV providers, have been upgrading their encryption software to prevent their channels being access via cardsharing. The only way to continually access these channels via satellite would be using a Sky Digibox and a Sky viewing card with a monthly subscription.

Jon Worby – The Sat and PC Guy – our main website with information about UK TV in Spain – the latest satellite TV news for the Costa Blanca and Spain


telephone: 962819796 / 620130292



The Javea Grapevine can be found online at :

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Jun 192014

As Sky increase their anti piracy measures, ( all Sky Sports HD channels are now no longer available on card share systems.

Earlier this week Sky Sports 1 HD joining the other Sky Sports HD channels, and Sky Movies HD, and a number of other Sky HD channels, to have their “setting” changed to stop their sky cards being used on non sky digiboxes.

The current list of Sky HD channels no longer available on card sharing systems is:

ITV Encore HD
Sky 1 HD
Sky living HD
Sky Atlantic HD
Sky Arts 1 HD
Sky Arts 2 HD

History HD
Crime HD
National Geographic UK HD
Nat Geo Wild HD

Sky Premier HD
Sky Sci Fi / Horror HD
Sky Disney HD
Sky Family HD
Sky Showcase HD
Sky Drama HD
Sky Thriller HD
Sky Greats HD
Sky Select HD
Sky Action HD
Sky Comedy HD

Sky Sports News HD
Sky Sports 1 HD
Sky Sports 2 HD
Sky Sports 3 HD
Sky Sports 4 HD
Sky Sports 5 HD
Sky Sports F1 HD

Despite this change, some “satellite installers” on the Costa Blanca and Spain are still advertising and offering these systems, as “Full Sky HD Packages”.

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Jun 062014

This weeks satellite TV news for Spain
Our main website is at :
125 x 135cm dish – the recommended size of satellite dish for my service area – installed from 275 euros.

Watch 11 subscription free HD TV channels with a Freesat HD receiver.
Canadian Grand Prix this weekend
Live on BBC Sport, Sky Sports, BeIn Sports, Antenna 3
Temporary BBC Red Button streams for summer sport and events
New ITV subscription channels ITV Encore launches on Monday
IS Sky to launch a new Sports Channel?
BBC announce Wimbledon coverage
More Sky HD channels lost from illegal card share systems…
Intelsat 907 “Scam” satellite service – another change of BISS keys this week – only 4 months after the previous key change…will they become more regular

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May 202014

Further to our last Sky cardshare post ( ) today more Sky HD channels were removed from card sharing systems.

Today Sky Premier HD, Sky Disney HD, and Sky SciFi / Horror HD were added to the list, as Sky improve their channel encryption and security to combat their channels appearing on cardshare systems.

And still installers on the Costa Blanca are advertising, offering and installing “the full sky hd package” for 25 euros per month.


The list of channels removed from card share systems currently stands at:

Sky 1 HD
Sky Premier HD
Sky Atlantic HD
Sky SciFi / Horror HD
Sky Disney HD
Sky Living HD
Sky Arts 1 HD
Sky Arts 2 HD
National Geographic UK HD
History HD
Crime HD
NAT Geo Wild HD





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May 172014

Sky TV

How to connect your Sky+HD box to Wifi
How to connect your Sky+HD box to the Internet
How to connect your Sky+HD box to ADSL
How to connect your Sky+HD box to your router
How to connect your Sky+HD box to your UK TV router

For Sky users outside the UK you will need to use a UK TV Router or VPN to access the Sky Store online content.

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May 162014

Over the last week or so a number of posts on satellite forums have reported weaker signals from the Astra 2E satellites UK spot beam.

This UK beam carries the majority of the BBC and ITV channels.

Reception in the UK is not affected, but in some areas of Europe, some people have noticed a lot more “pixilation” or loss of some of the BBC and ITV channels recently.

Some of these people are living in areas where the satellite dish they have is “on the edge” and so any changes in signal would be more noticeable. Just one of the problems of going for the smallest dish possible and not a larger dish that allows for that little bit more leeway if the signals change.

Various theories about this recent change in signals have been banded around.

Satellites do have a tendency to “move” around in space – they are not always in the exact same place. So every so often the satellites have to fire up their positioning thrusters to perform some “station keeping”, moving the satellite back into its correct place. This will have an effect on the signal footprint back on earth.

We are moving into summer. Heat and humidity can cause problems for satellite signals. IN areas where the signals is already weak, loss of more signals due to heat and humidity can cause a loss of channels.

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May 122014

Further to our post this morning :

BSkyB confirms talks to buy Sky Germany and Sky Italy – Sky Europe?

BSkyB has confirmed it is in discussion with Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox over the potential acquisition of its pay-TV assets in Germany and Italy which it said would create a “world-class multinational pay-TV group”.

BSkyB said it had begun “preliminary discussions” in the tie-up, which it is estimated would cost around €10bn.

The UK and Ireland-based satellite broadcaster said a deal would involve buying Fox’s 57% controlling stake in Sky Deutschland before launching a mandatory takeover of the remaining stake. Fox owns 100% of Sky Italia.

A statement issued on Monday, BSkyB said

“BSkyB has a clear set of plans to grow its business in the UK and Ireland, is executing these well and expects to continue to achieve excellent growth and returns for shareholders. At the same time, the company continuously explores ways to create further value for shareholders,” it said.

“As part of this approach, the company initiated preliminary discussions with 21st Century Fox to evaluate the potential acquisition of its pay-TV assets in Germany and Italy. BSkyB believes at the right value, this combination would have the potential to create a world-class multinational pay-TV group.

“These discussions have not progressed beyond a preliminary stage, no agreement has been reached on terms, value or transaction structure and there is no certainty that a transaction will occur.

“Any potential agreement would be subject to external factors including the Sky Deutschland share price continuing to trade on an undisturbed basis.

“BSkyB’s focus in respect of Sky Deutschland would be to acquire 21st Century Fox’s controlling stake (57% on a fully diluted basis). As a consequence BSkyB would be required to make a takeover offer to the public minority of Sky Deutschland in accordance with relevant German legislation. BSkyB would expect, subject to German minimum offer price rules, to make this offer without a premium.

“All board discussion of this topic is solely within a committee composed of the independent directors of BSkyB, in which directors affiliated with 21st Century Fox do not participate.”

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May 102014

Sky TV – Sky On Demand – Sky Box Sets – Sky TV Spain – Sky Catchup TV in Spain

Promo from Sky about their box sets available on Sky+HD for Sky subscribers.

UK TV Router for On Demand in Spain :

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Apr 262014

Rugby League Magic Weekend 2014 – Live Sky TV Coverage and Fixtures

Rugby League Magic Weekend


Sat 17th May – Super League Magic Weekend

London Broncos v Catalan Dragons
Super League, Sky Sports 3 HD (12:00)

Widnes Vikings v Salford Red Devils
Super League, Sky Sports 3 HD (14:30)

Hull K R v Hull FC
Super League, Sky Sports 3 HD (16:30)

Wigan Warriors v Leeds Rhinos
Super League, Sky Sports 3 HD (19:00)
Sun 18th May – Super League Magic Weekend

Wakefield Wildcats v Castleford Tigers
Super League, Sky Sports 1 HD (12:00)

Huddersfield Giants v Bradford Bulls
Super League, Sky Sports 1 HD (14:30)

Warrington Wolves v St Helens
Super League, Sky Sports 1 HD (16:30)


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Mar 282014

Sky HD channels move to the UK beam – some areas of Spain may have lost these channels…

Four Sky HD channels have this week moved satellites.

The four Sky HD channels have moved to the UK beam of the new Astra 2F UK TV satellite.

This is the same UK beam that carries Channel Five, and may mean that some people in the northern areas of Spain (Catalonia and Barcelona) and the south areas (Costa del Sol, Andalucía) and Portugal (Algarve) may have lost reception of these four Sky HD channels.

Their SD / Standard definition versions may still be available.

The four Sky HD channels affected are :

Dave HD,
Watch HD
Alibi HD
Star Plus HD

They have changed their frequencies from
12382MHz, polarisation H
10936MHz, polarisation vertical DVB-S2 Symbol Rate :23000 FEC:2/3

This comes despite some “satellite installers” saying there will be no changes to Sky channels and their reception not be affected by the new satellites…

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Mar 272014

Game of Thrones season 4’s first episode will be simulcast in the UK and US.

The news was confirmed by Sky at the launch of the new run, with the broadcaster revealing that the show will be screened in the middle of the night on Sky Atlantic, coinciding with the US East Coast airing.

Game of Thrones begins its fourth season on HBO on Sunday, April 6 at 9pm ET.

This will mean it will air in the UK at 2am on Monday, April 7.

The episode will also still be shown at 9pm on Monday as usual.

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Mar 192014

As we mentioned back in January ( Sky will be introducing a new look Sky Guide for their HD boxes.

Sky has overhauled its Sky+ electronic programme guide (Sky Guide) in the biggest shake up of its EPG since 1998.

For the first time ever, On Demand, including Catch Up TV and Sky Store, and the Sky+ Planner now sit alongside channel listings as equal options on a new homepage, so that customers can immediately find the shows they most want to watch, whether live or on demand.

The new-look EPG is being phased in for all Sky+ customers from Tuesday 18th March and will be completed by the end of May.

The update rolling out now means customers can now choose between browsing live channels, catching up on something recently aired, bingeing on a box set, watching a movie or browsing recordings in their Planner – all accessible from a single screen. Icons on the homepage will now include Catch Up TV, TV Box Sets, New Series, Best of On Demand and Sky Store.

The EPG homepage will also now contain a search bar, which will allow BSkyB customers to submit queries based on title, actor, event, channel, sport or keyword.

The change has been introduced to take into account the growing number of BSkyB subscribers choosing to watch TV on their own terms, Sky added.

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Feb 112014

I got a phone call this evening from a “IPTV” retailer, trying to “recruit” me, by saying all of Spain will only get UK TV via the internet by this week…as no satellite signals would be available in Spain….

There followed a few moments of silence after I mentioned I was getting UK TV fine on my 80cm satellite dish where I was!

“That’s not possible” he said…”all the signals have gone and switched off in Spain…no-one can receive anything”.

…as i turned up the volume enough for him to hear the TV – and then changed over to several channels to prove I was still getting signals.

“That’s not possible. That’s not possible. There are no Sky TV signals in Spain any more.”…he kept on saying…

as I started to watch the BBC Inside Out exposure on internet TV piracy….about providing pay tv channels without the correct subscription and viewing cards….

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Jan 222014

Sky Atlantic Game of Thrones Season 4 Trailer

Monday 7th April 2014 9pm UK – 10 CET Sky Atlantic

Game of Thrones will return to UK screens for its fourth series on April 7, less than 24 hours after it airs in the US.

The UK scheduling of Game of Thrones, where it airs on Sky Atlantic HD, is seen as an attempt to deter viewers from watching it illegally.

Watch the season 4 trailer here

Game of Thrones series averaged 14.2 million viewers in the US for the third series, HBO’s second-highest figures after The Sopranos.

Game of Thrones fans’ appetite for the show also made it the most pirated show of 2013, according to TorrentFreak, with nearly six million people using file-sharing sites to downloading the season finale.

Sky Atlantic on Sky TV in Spain :

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Oct 022013

Sky has added 12 new channels to its catch-up TV service: Discovery, TLC, E!, Star, Watch, GOLD, Dave, Alibi, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Cartoonito and Sky News.

Sky is also adding new titles to its TV Box Set collection.

Continue reading »

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