Internet TV

Internet TVInternet television allows the users to choose the content or the television show they want to watch from an archive of content or from a channel directory. The two forms of viewing Internet television are streaming the content directly to a media player or simply downloading the media to the user’s computer. With the “TV on Demand” market growing, these on-demand websites or applications are essential for major television broadcasters. For example, the BBC iPlayer brings in users which stream more than one million videos per week, with one of the BBC’s headline shows The Apprentice taking over three percent to five percent of the UK’s Internet traffic due to people watching the first episode on the BBC iPlayer. Availability of online TV content continues to grow.

Every night the use of on-demand television peaks at around 10 pm. Most providers of the service provide several different formats and quality controls so that the service can be viewed on many different devices. Some services now offer a HD service alongside their SD, streaming is the same but offers the quality of HD to the device being used, as long as it is using a HD screen. During Peak times the BBC iPlayer transmits 12 GB (gigabytes) of information per second. Over the course of a month the iPlayer sends 7 PB (petabytes) of information.

Before 2006, most catch-up services used peer-to-peer (P2P) networking, in which users downloaded an application and data would be shared between the users rather than the service provider giving the now more commonly used streaming method. Now most service providers have moved away from the P2P systems and are now using the streaming media. The old P2P service was selected because the existing infrastructure could not handle the bandwidth necessary for centralised streaming distribution. Some consumers didn’t like their upload bandwidth being consumed by their video player, which partially motivated the rollout of centralised streaming distribution.

Archive – BBC Satellite Services Move

ASTRA 2E SatelliteIn February 2012, SES retired Astra 2D and BBC services moved to a new temporary home on Astra 1N. Astra 1N is due to take up its permanent position in 2013 (19°East), so the BBC’s services will move to their new permanent home on Astra 2E (28.2°East) when that becomes operational. SES expects Astra 2E to launch in Q2 2013, so we currently expect to transition BBC services to it from October 2013.

Archive – UK TV switch off in Andorra

Why you will be losing British TV in December 2013

Lost my UK TV Signal in AndorraReceiving ‘Freesat’ UKTV channels and the most popular British Channels (i.e BBC, ITV, Channel 4) via Satellite in Andorra,  will not be possible for most people, using existing equipment, from about mid-December 2013.

The launch of the SES Astra Satellite fleet approx. 13 years ago allowed expats in Andorra the ability to receive their favourite television programs via satellite with little interruption.

However, recent improvements to the Astra Satellite fleet will change all this. UK television has, up until now, been provided by several individual satellites positioned in geo-stationary orbit 22,000 miles above the earth at 28.2deg east of south.

The life expectancy of these satellites was around 12 years and are, therefore, coming to the end of their useful life.  Astra Satellite 2D was being used to transmit the most popular British Channels, however, began to fail towards the end of 2012. As a temporary measure, British Channels were moved from 2D to 1N early last year.

All British channels will be moved to the new ‘advanced technology’ satellites (launched during 2013) named Astra 2E and 2F which have two main broadcast beams. These are a ‘UK spot beam’, concentrated entirely on a UK domestic client base and a ‘pan European beam’. The footprint of the ‘UK spot beam’ will not extend to Andorra.

The evidence for all of this being Channel Five. Moved to the UK spot beam in December 2012, Channel Five is no longer available in Andorra via satellite.

Why has my BBC in Andorra goneThe BBC have explained the changes as being necessary due to the need to improve signal strength and quality for services to the entire UK, particularly northern Scotland.

Sky channels are unlikely to be affected as it is probable that they will be broadcast via the ‘pan European beam’. This can still be received as far south as southern Spain, without problem.

There are, however, options for people wishing to view UK TV in Andorra.  Anyone with a stable internet connection (min 2Mb) can be setup to receive UKTV via the internet. In addition customer in Andorra will be able to enjoy many advanced features such as catch up TV services, programme-recording, up-to-date movies in English and live Premier League football.

Our advice, don’t hang around too long and be prepared for the ‘big switch off’.  Get ahead of the crowd and before the big rush, contact us to discuss your options.