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Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted
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Old 26-10-2020, 20:39   #1
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Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

I've wondered if HD EPG swaps were doable on Freeview before, as it's happened on other TV platforms, and it appears that the BBC is experimenting doing it on UK DTT.
a516digital on Twitter has reported that the BBC has piloted a HD/SD swap on certain Panasonic Freeview devices, swapping their kids channels.

Tweet is as follows.

The BBC has piloted an HD/SD swap on some Freeview devices for the first time.

CBBC SD and CBeebies SD have swapped slots with their HD counterparts for viewers with Panasonic LCD models: HX800B, HX820B, HX900B, HX940B and Panasonic OLED TV models HZ1000B, HZ1500B, HZ2000B


https://twitter.com/a516digital/stat...93324379394048
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Old 26-10-2020, 22:40   #2
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

Doubt it'll happen for BBC1. A lot of the regional news programmes are still in SD.
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Old 27-10-2020, 01:14   #3
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

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Originally Posted by Mr K View Post
Doubt it'll happen for BBC1. A lot of the regional news programmes are still in SD.
They don't need to implement it nationally. All the BBC channels are on regional or semi-regional (my term, I'm not 100% sure of the term they use, I think it's subregion) multiplexes, so they could swap in areas where the equipment mirrors what is needed and have upgraded regional news. Scotland and Wales, I think, fit that criteria so could swap BBC1.

BBC1 is swapped out on Satellite and Cable for some regions already. If I remember correctly whereas the BBCA SD Freeview multiplex is fully regionalised, the BBCB HD multiplex, which carries the main HD PSB channels from all the PSB broadcasters, is only partially regionalised. Until BBCB mirrors the BBCA regional divisions they can't fully implement swaps even for some areas where HD versions exist on other platforms.

This also means ITV can't put all its newly launched HD regions on Freeview unless they are prepared to pay to upgrade the equipment to enable it, and you can bet they'd rather lower/split the cost by getting BBC onboard.

---------- Post added 27-10-2020 at 00:14 ---------- Previous post was 26-10-2020 at 23:35 ----------

The BBC page about the HD swap.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/reception/work...eeview-devices
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Old 27-10-2020, 09:24   #4
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

I can’t believe this is still a thing, so many years after digital switchover and the launch of HD services. In the long run it would surely have been simpler to can Freeview altogether and standardise on Freesat service.
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Old 27-10-2020, 09:58   #5
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

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Originally Posted by Chris View Post
I canít believe this is still a thing, so many years after digital switchover and the launch of HD services. In the long run it would surely have been simpler to can Freeview altogether and standardise on Freesat service.
That's probably where it's going though, as mobile technologies eat into the radio space used by Freeview. HD channels are going backwards in some places because of that.

But could you imagine for analogue switch off everyone on on satellite or cable was forced to have a satellite dish instead of plugging something into their existing aerial socket?
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Old 27-10-2020, 10:02   #6
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

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Originally Posted by Chris View Post
I canít believe this is still a thing, so many years after digital switchover and the launch of HD services. In the long run it would surely have been simpler to can Freeview altogether and standardise on Freesat service.
Not everyone can have a dish, some still have to put up with indoor aerials.

They probably learned from Freeview and put the required systems in place for Freesat. There may be a historical technical hurdle inadvertently introduced by the rushed introduction of Freeview after the On/ITV Digital collapse, that made an HD/SD swap facility difficult to implement at the time of switchover.
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Old 27-10-2020, 10:13   #7
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

It's also probably that you need a DVB-T2 receiver to get HD channels on Freeview.

So you couldn't think about swapping the numbers until there are more of those and DVB-T2 TVs than the older DVB-T SD only boxes and TVs.
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Old 27-10-2020, 12:26   #8
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

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Originally Posted by BenMcr View Post
It's also probably that you need a DVB-T2 receiver to get HD channels on Freeview.

So you couldn't think about swapping the numbers until there are more of those and DVB-T2 TVs than the older DVB-T SD only boxes and TVs.
You don't need to say to the public the channel numbers are getting swapped for everyone though. SD-only Sky and Freesat boxes still show the SD versions in the more prominent positions. I'm not certain p, but I think Sky swapped HD pretty early on in their EPG, there being more SD customers wasn't an issue as nothing changed for them.

They don't necessarily need to do much, if anything, differently on Freeview unless there's a weird legacy technical quirk that's stopping them, which this pilot being run suggests isn't an issue (any more).

Anecdotal evidence from various forum posters over the years suggests that many Freeview HD device users often continue to use the SD versions either because they find it less hassle or even don't realise they aren't automatically swapped already, mistaking the upscaled version, and being unaware of HD versions being located in the 100s.
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Old 27-10-2020, 12:33   #9
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

Quote:
Quote from cheekyangus:
Anecdotal evidence from various forum posters over the years suggests that many Freeview HD device users often continue to use the SD versions either because they find it less hassle or even don't realise they aren't automatically swapped already, mistaking the upscaled version, and being unaware of HD versions being located in the 100s.
Much in the same way that before HD and HDMI many people just plugged the SCART connector in without seeing / knowing if they could switch to component (RGB) video, which was much crisper, rather than composite video.
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Old 28-10-2020, 23:12   #10
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

The broadcast channel swap is always going to be the difficult one due to outdated receiving equipment being used, & with the BBC strapped for cash upgrading BBCB is not going to happen. What is more likely is an eventual swap of all muxes to DVB-T2.

The other option is to get manufacturers on board & get the receivers to do the job. This is what has made the swap easier on Sky & Freesat, & is also now incorporated into Virgins V360, which uses the SD number for the HD equivalant & discards the SD channel.
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Old 29-10-2020, 00:56   #11
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Re: Freeview HD/SD channel swaps being piloted

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Originally Posted by nodrogd View Post
The other option is to get manufacturers on board & get the receivers to do the job. This is what has made the swap easier on Sky & Freesat, & is also now incorporated into Virgins V360, which uses the SD number for the HD equivalant & discards the SD channel.
That's what the BBC seem to be trialing and why I started this thread.
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