The big BBC switch – off : what’s the latest?

So in the early hours of Thursday morning, the BBC switched satellites and stopped sending the BBC across Spain.

It takes a lot to get the Brits riled up, but taking away their TV usually does the trick.

The good news is that you can still get it here in Almería.The bad news is that you need more equipment than a CIA monitoring station.

It looks as if you need at least a 1.8 metre dish (most expats here will only have a 1.2m dish at most) and a decent LNB (the bit on the dish that sticks out). Probably looking at about a grand, IF you have space for a 1.8 metre dish (apartment? forget it!)

The problem is that the current BBC satellite* isn’t pointed at Spain, it’s pointed over the British isles. So all we get here is, basically, a reflection of the signal bounced off the atmosphere.

Where the BBC is SUPPOSED to be received

The BBC doesn’t care: they say that:

The overspill of the BBC’s services will be reduced so viewers outside the UK will find it even harder to receive them. I know that this causes unhappiness to some of you living outside the UK. However, it is entirely appropriate because the BBC domestic services are for people living in the UK only.

Now, over the next couple of weeks they will be tuning the signal. And there is a rumour that BBC HD channels will continue on the Sky platform, which we can still get.

So the impartial advice: don’t rush out and spend a lot for a couple of weeks. Let it settle down and see what happens.

Oh, and don’t get conned by the TV over IP offers. Most of them are some bloke in Blightly who retransmits TV from his laptop in his Mum’s basement, and they get closed down / run into bandwidth issues pretty quickly.

If you are looking into TV over the internet options, don’t forget you need a pretty good connection (a landline ADSL connection from Telefonica, basically) AND you have to trust that Telefonica doesn’t start to limit your connection once you get above so much transferred a month.

Can you imagine tens of thousands of expats all streaming EastEnders live? The whole Spanish internet would collapse….

In fact, reading the Spanish forums, lots of people complain that they suspect their internet is limited once they start to regularly use lots of bandwidth – it slows down to a crawl, basically. Contracting Telefonicas own TV over IP package, imagenio, seems to fix that particular issue, we know not why……

*I know it’s a transponder. We all know it’s a transponder. But it’s easier to say satellite.

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One Reply to “The big BBC switch – off : what’s the latest?”

  1. As an avid rugby fan I was very sad to lose the 6 nations today.
    However I have found a channel on Sky – 978 – which purports to show highlights at 20.30 Spanish time.

    This also has other sports reports including the winter olympics.

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