The previous thread was locked as it wasn't active since September 2014 - and I felt quite reluctant about making this topic, but here it is. This simply focuses on the updates to the Freeview platform, be it new channels, retunes and closures.
Recent updates include:
Hochanda on COM4 (TJC moves to COM5, Community to COM8)
Front Runner was launched on LCN 91 and True Movies 1 is now available in local areas.
As for LCN 90 it's highly likely that Rishtey Cineplex will take the slot, on COM8 capacity.
COM8 seems to be filling slowly with cheap SD channels nobody will watch.
I welcome diversity of channels on Freeview, but because these channels are on muxes that have limited coverage and require DVB-T2 equipment it's cheaper to run these niche channels on these multiplexes.
The full capacity of DVB-T muxes on Freeview has largely prevented channels such as some news channels (CNN, Euronews) and documentary channels (PBS America) from joining the service.
Went through the Freeview EPG and no EPG data is available for the Store from Saturday. Either it isn't updated fully (like what happened with TJC once) or ITV may pull off the same tactic of abrupt channel closure again. The Store has been on life support ever since the chatmercial concept was wound down, even more so now that Hochanda has a 24 hour slot.
Update: EPG data now updated. Don't believe everything you see on the EPG.
Last edited by Rex on 12 October 2016 9:10pm - 2 times in total
The 700MHz frequency clearance is to begin in July 2017. The upper part of Scotland (Scottish or Grampian) will be first affected.
And DigitalUK is starting a consultation on the Freeview EPG - changes down below.
HD section extended from LCN 100-139
Children's section moved to LCN 200-230
News section moved to LCN 230-249
Adult possibly being moved to LCN 670-699
Interactive and streamed services moved to LCN 250-299
Freeview Play services may be added alongside the YouView allocated LCNs.
Yes, these +1 channels that are on air for 1 hour at 4am are annoying. Launch a channel or give the space to someone who is ready to. There's no point having ITV 4+1, ITV Be+1, YourTV+1, TruTV+1 and quite a few others if they're never gonna show anything!
The consultation does include a section on these channels, actually. They propose introducing a requirement for channels to broadcast at least 2 hours of audio-video content a day (or 14 hours a week).
It stops short of allowing channel number trading, but it does suggest vacant channel positions could be offered to the highest bidder (if they can't be filled by associated channels).
But if it's just 2 hours a night they'll broadcast 3-5am or 4-6am. They'll still be blank for the rest of the time and technically squatting. They should have to broadcast during certain daytime or evening hours in order to keep their positions.
I agree, but Digital UK have to trade-off between a) seeking maximum efficiency and b) not discouraging smaller/niche broadcasters from the platform. In the past, these rules would have prevented "legitimate" channels like TeleG, Setanta Sports and Lottery Xtra from broadcasting.
On the other hand, they need to keep the likes of ITV sweet, so by suggesting a 2/14 hour minimum (which is broadly in line with Sky and other platforms' policies), they're at least addressing the issue.
Still doesn't make sense to me that Youview channels were bought forward in the EPG to the 300s rather than extended into the 600s to keep the 300s as an option for Freeview channels. And although moving the adult channels to the back of the EPG is great in theory in reality that could put them between a CBeebies red button stream and Radio 1 - so even though they're not broadcasting in the day it's still not ideal. Would be better to use the connected service as a buffer.
What's the plan for 140-199 then - are they just being sensible and future proofing or do they perhaps plan to perhaps add other genres - hopefully shopping. There's also enough channels now to justify a film section IMO,, and although Film4 could be the big loser in such a move I think the other channels would ultimately benefit, whilst Film4 heading the section should offset the move from LCN15.
As for the short channels - I think it's simple. If you broadcast for less than 3 hours a day you go into an overspill section.