Satellite television offers those in rural areas the opportunity to receive many more channels than would normally be a available, by obtaining the signal from an orbiting satellite instead of a land based transmitter. Additionally, satellites make more efficient use of carrier frequencies, allowing several more channels to be broadcast. This makes satellite a popular choice for watching TV.

Aside from generic receivers, two satellite based platforms operate in the UK. Sky is a predominantly subscription based service, whilst Freesat offers a more limited range of channels but without the need for subscription.