Monday, 15 October 2012

British TV has arrived!

It used to be very difficult or expensive to receive the British channels in Spain via satellite. Not anymore. It is now easy and cheap to have access to the BBC channels, ITV channels, Channel 4 HD (and its sister channels), Channel 5, etc.

For years, British expats and other viewers interested in watching British TV had just one option: get a large satellite dish. Depending on the area you lived in Spain, you  might need a dish as big as 2 metres! Not the kind of thing you want to install in a flat or on the roof of your house. In southern Spain and a few other areas of the country you could get away with a dish of about 1.20 metres.

Fortunately, since Friday 24th February, all channels are on a new satellite called Astra 1N, orbiting at 28.2° East. This means most people should be able to receive them with an 80-cm dish (other areas might need 1 metre). But don't get too comfy. This is just a temporary measure until a new satellite is launched to accommodate these channels.

Until then, we can watch the British channels without breaking the bank or moving house. A large dish will probably be needed next year once the new satellite comes into operation. 

Let's enjoy it while it lasts!

Update (4/12/12): The channels are now being transferred to the new satellite. This may take the whole month of December so some channels can still be watched.

Update (14/12/12): It seems the rest of the channels may not be transferred until summer 2013. That's good news! (BBC, ITV and others still remaining).

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