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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Real Digital - a new UK satellite TV provider

Real Digital are a company that says it will offer a range of free to air satellite TV channels, and a range of pay channels. The system was said to launch early January 2011, but there have been some delays.

Real Digital will, like Freesat, offer all the free to air UK TV channels, including the 5 HD channels, BBC1HD, BBCHD,ITV1HD, C4 HD and NHK World HD. But Real Digital say that they will also be able to offer some subscription channels. Real Digital say that they will off channels like Sky Sports, without the need of subscribing to other pay channels, which is currently the can on the Sky TV system. According to reports Sky SPorts 1 and Sky Sports 2 may be available, and for a lot less than it costs to subscribe to Sky, thanks tot he ruling by OFCOM that Sky must offer its channels at a competitive and fair price to other operators.

The system will use the same satellites and frequencies as requried by Sky and Freesat receivers. It will also be restricted to UK only users, just like the Sky and Freesta services, but I am sure that ways around this may well be found.

Real Digital have released a top ten Q&A for their system.

Q. When will REAL Digital be launching its service and where can I buy a box?

A. 1st of September 2011 is the official launch date for the Free To Air service. The first boxes will be available from Maplin.

Q. How much will a REAL Digital Set Top Box cost?

A. There will be 2 types of set top boxes available, one from Fortec Star (a single tuner HD unit, with an RRP of £159.99), and a REAL+ HD box from DIGITAL STREAM, which has twin tuners and a built in 500GB hard drive so you can record one channel while watching another. This will have a RRP of £299.99.

Q. I already have a Sky/Freesat satellite dish will I need a new one or any home visit?

A. You will not need a new dish or any adjustment as long as the dish currently works correctly. You can simply plug the satellite dish (LNB) cable into the (LNB) connection on the back of the REAL set top box and just follow the simple on screen set up guide. You can then start watching any of the hundreds of Free To Air channels without any subscription or you can add additional Pay TV channels as they become available.

Q. What HD channels would I get without a Pay TV subscription?

A. BBC One HD, BBC HD, ITV1 HD/STV HD, Channel 4 HD and NHK World HD.

Q. Will I have to enter a 12 month Pay TV contract to get Sky Sports?

A. No REAL Digital believes you should be free to choose how long you want to Pay for Sports channels, so you can Pay on a month by month basis.

Q. What makes REAL Digital different to Sky TV or freesat?

A. REAL Digital will not make you take out a satellite subscription before you can add Premium channels like Sky Sports or make it a minimum 12 month contract to get the Sky Sports channels. Compared to freesat, REAL Digital will be listing many more channels and be including a easy to use EPG TV Guide. So you will have more Free TV to watch AND you'll have the option to add Pay TV channels you want.

Q. What if I don't have a HD TV can I still use a REAL Digital box?

A. You can still watch a REAL Digital set top box even on a Standard Definition box when you connect it to the scart connection. However you won't get the High Definition picture quality unless you connect the REAL Digital box to a HD ready TV using a HDMI cable.

Q. Will there be any new channels that I don't currently get launching on REAL Digital?

A. Yes there already a number of new Pay TV channels planning on launching this year on REAL Digital.

Q. How do I get a REAL Digital Smartcard?

A. All REAL Digital Set Top Boxes have a REAL Digital Smartcard included in the with the packaging all you need to do is follow the instructions to activate the card

Q. Will the REAL Digital remote control work with my TV as well?

A. Yes the REAL Digital remote controls are universal TV remotes as well. You will simply need the correct code for your make of TV.

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