27 June 2008

BBC begin DTT-HD testing

The BBC have begun broadcasting test high definition broadcasts from the Guildford transmitter, in preparation for the launch of high definition services on Freeview. Unlike the previous HD trial in London, the newly-approved DVB-T2 codec is being used – a more efficient technology which allows for more data to be broadcast in the same bandwidth.

24 June 2008

Warner Bros added to Top Up TV

Programmes from Warner Bros TV will be available on Top Up TV Anytime from June 30. According to on-screen advertisements, subscribers can look forward to shows like The West Wing, Studio 60..., Supernatural and Nip/Tuck. Meanwhile, it's rumoured that UKTV Gold could shortly be switching to a downloads-only service (rather than the current, "live channel" system), as one of several big changes to the Anytime service.

13 June 2008

BBC Sport interactive goes permanent

The BBC's interactive sport service will become a permanent fixture on digital television after the Olympics, according to Broadcast. The move is designed to make greater use of the corporation's sports rights, from television (including US basketball, next year's Formula 1 season and Premier League highlights) and radio (such as the scorecard service available during Test cricket matches), as well as their extensive archive and news operations.

12 June 2008

Ofcom investigates selling off "white space"

Ofcom has launched a consultation into the feasibility of using "white space" – small blocks of spectrum only available in certain tightly-defined geographic areas – for broadcasting low-power regional services. The move could create the opportunities for local multiplexes, carrying regional channels like Manchester's Channel M.

Top Up issued with data broadcast licence

Ofcom have issued a licence for a data service on DTT to Top Up TV, suggesting they have successfully bid for some of the spare capacity on multiplex A. It is not yet known what the service will be used for.

09 June 2008

Setanta extends weekend broadcast hours

Setanta Sports 1 will extend its broadcast hours at the weekends, according to the latest electronic programme guide information. Saturday night broadcasts will now cease at 05:00 (on Sunday morning), two hours later than at present. The capacity is being taken from Top Up TV Anytime 1.

Discovery channels shake-up on Anytime

Animal Planet has been removed from Top Up TV Anytime today, and has been replaced by a re-vamped Discovery channels line-up. On-demand content has been aligned with the Discovery and Discovery Real Time channels (rather than being filed under "Lifestyle" and "Factual").

04 June 2008

Virgin 1 goes widescreen

Virgin Media Television channels are now available in widescreen. Channel presentation, adverts and selected programming is now available in 16:9 format on Virgin 1 for Freeviewers, and on Living for Top Up TV subscribers.

02 June 2008

Q Radio re-launched

Q Radio, from the people behind Q magazine, has re-launched. The station now features live presenters and shows, and is also available on DAB in London, having been a “jukebox” service since launch.

Freeview changes kill Brum’s old boxes

Around 1% of digital terrestrial receivers in Birmingham and the West Midlands can no longer receive DTT services, due to transmission changes at Sutton Coldfield. The effected boxes, which include models by Daewoo, Labgear, Triax, Portland, Bush and SetPal, were all released before official Freeview specifications were released, and can’t cope with the latest “network enhancements”. Freeviewers hit by the change will just have to buy new boxes.

01 June 2008

Ravensbourne College raves on air

The Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication has become the latest academic institution to begin broadcasting via DTT. The College, based in Chislehurst, South East London, has the capacity to broadcast three television channels and one radio station (along with EPG data). The project is part of the “Rave On Air” event, run by the college each year to showcase student talent, and is being supported by multiplex-operator Arqiva.