What Is Freesat?
Freesat is ‘free to air’ satellite TV. In other words it’s a bit like Freeview but using a satellite dish instead of a TV aerial.
It’s not Sky. And there is no subscription fee.
You simply buy a Freesat receiver, Freesat recorder or a Freesat TV. You need a satellite dish of course, but you can use your old Sky dish or have one installed fairly cheaply.
And that’s it. No application, no form filling, no confusing ‘packages’, no subscription. Just turn it on and off you go.
So Why Is Freesat Actually Free?
It’s a partnership between the BBC and ITV, the UK’s two largest free to air broadcasters. It originally launched in May 2008.
Can I Receive Freesat?
Almost certainly, yes. Over 98% of the UK can get a good signal, which means pixel perfect pictures.
Is This Just Sky?
No, don’t confuse this with ‘Freesat From Sky’ which is a different thing. Apart from channel differences, Sky do not give you the electronic program guide (EPG) for free, which makes recording programs virtually impossible.
So What Free Channels Are There?
You get over 140 TV and radio channels. This includes all the usual BBC and ITV channels and radio stations, plus a lot of the extra ones you may have seen on Freeview, and more.
What About HD (Hi-Def)?
Freesat is slighty ahead of the game here. Freeview still doesn’t quite have any HD service yet, but Freesat already has two full HD channels, BBC HD and ITV 1 HD.