Jun 092016

How much money did the BBC save when it ended it’s Sky encryption contract?

Trawling around the internet, I found this Freedom of Information request, regarding how much money the BBC saved by moving from Sky encryption, to being free to air.

Originally BBC channels were only available via satellite using a Sky subscription viewing card. Then the BBC moved away from the Sky subscription model, but their channels were still encrypted, and required a viewing card to view – the so called “Solus” card, the cards costs being met by the BBC.

But moving away from Sky’s encryption also meant the BBC moved it the Astra 2D satellites UK beam, to try and prevent signal over-spill into areas where the BBC does not hold the broadcaster rights to.

A BBC press release suggested that “an estimated £85 million over the next five years because it will no longer be using BSkyB’s Conditional Access system.”

The FOI request asked for information as to how this figure of £85 million was calculated.

The FOI document follows:

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