That’s TV continues to grow its classic music service, and has rolled out 4 new decade based music channels, expanded on the music service offered at various times of the day on the main That’s TV channel. However, coverage is limited at the time being, with neither channel offered to cable (Virgin Media) subscribers. The new channels collectively replace Classic Hits, itself a rebrand of That’s TV Gold.Continue reading That’s TV Grows with Decade Based Music Channels
Very much a post of just reminding readers that I’m still here, this one. Over the past few weeks, I’ve accrued details on a few significant changes in the TV world. Some stories I’ve held back on due to incomplete information or a lack of author direct observations, others delayed simply due to a lack of hours in the day.Continue reading Like Buses, The News Stories Come All at Once…
A few changes have been or are being made to music channels. This will be a longish article, but I felt it wise to wait until I had the full details, rather than post multiple very short articles.
I shall begin with the easiest change, relating to terrestrial (Freeview) only. Now 90s has moved down to channel number 87, to allow for the new Earthx channel take over number 79 (an article on Earthx will follow later this week).
A little more complex, is that of Classic Hits (formerly That’s TV Music), which has resulted in increased coverage. On the Manchester only Freeview multiplex, Classic Hits has replaced Country Music Entertainment, giving a 24 hour service to the Greater Manchester area. The latter remains available on compatible internet connected devices, via the OnDemand365 streaming portal. The Manchester version is labelled Classic Hits MCR, and has taken Classic Hits original number 91.
The part-time version of Classic Hits continues, but now broadcast from 4am to 7am, instead of 1am to 7am. This allows That’s TV (UK) to extended it’s broadcast hours to 4am, with both services continuing to timeshare. The UK version of Classic Hits has taken over Country Music Entertainment’s channel number 88, benefitting from a slightly higher and more prominent EPG position.
In addition Classic Hits has also launched on satellite, and can be found on Sky channel number 366. The service is free to air, and can be manually tuned in to other satellite receivers, but is not yet available on the Freesat EPG.
Trace Urban, Trace Latina and Trace Brazuca have joined the Channelbox streaming platform, which can be accessed via the portal on Freeview channel number 271 and via mobile phone apps.
Lastly, Spotlight TV (formerly Keep It Country) have now confirmed the channel is leaving the Sky and Freesat platforms, on or around the end of August. The channel is looking to join the above mentioned Channelbox platform, although at the time of writing has not yet done so. The channel was for a time the only music channel on the Freesat platform, and has blamed the decision on the methods used to calculate viewing figures. The channel is expected to continue in a more limited, and largely online based form.
Unsurprisingly, the previous post on the Freeview (terrestrial) channel shuffle did miss some details. Most changes, except those to BBC Four HD and CBeebies HD (click link for article), were made as expected, but there are a couple of broadcast hour changes that I missed.
That’s TV (UK) and sister channel Classic Hits (formerly That’s Music) timeshare, and share a single 24 hour video stream. That’s TV (UK) broadcasts from 7am to 1am, with Classic Hits limited to 1am to 7am in the early hours of the morning.
PBS America, now without its Freeview only +1 channel (which broadcast for longer hours than the main channel), has extended its hours marginally. PBS America now closes down at midnight each night, instead of the previous 11pm. It would appear, that negotiations are still ongoing for future increases in broadcast hours once bandwith (space) becomes available, though this has not been confirmed.
A large number of Freeview changes are happening, either on the 29th or 30th June (2022). I hope that this article will be a round up of them all, but there may be changes to what’s planned.
As already mentioned, 4 Music will switch over to E4 Extra on the 29th. See the previous article for more details. On the same date, BBC Four HD and CBeebies HD will be added to the PSB3 (HD/DVB-T2) multiplex, and will become available to those who receive signals from a relay transmitter for the first time. Quest Red +1, Together TV, and That’s TV (UK version) will also move, but to permanent commercial multiplexes. Not all viewers will be able to receive these channels, but the channels will benefit from improved coverage. The placeholder for Craft Extra on channel 95 will also be removed.
The following day sees the second part of the changes. Now 80’s will reduce coverage to being available in Manchester only (on the Greater Manchester multiplex). CBS Drama will rebrand to Reality Extra (see previous article, and will also reduce coverage by moving to the COMUX multiplex which is used to broadcast locally licensed TV services.
Also on the 30th, That’s TV will change channel number, and will take over channel number 65 from Freesports, as that channel is leaving Freeview. Sister channel That’s Music will increase coverage (presumed to be also moving to a commercial multiplex), and will move up slightly, from channel 92 to 91.
Freesports has opted to leave Freeview entirely, and will rely predominantly on Sky and Virgin Media, but is also available free-to-air on satellite, so can be manually tuned into Freesat and other satellite receivers. CBS Justice is closing entirely, and will not be replaced on Freeview (but is becoming Legend on other platforms). Forces TV is closing on all platforms, and will no longer be available.
BBC News HD, QVC HD, QVC Beauty HD, Quest HD, and More 4 +1 will also leave Freeview on the 30th, but will remain on other platforms (where applicable). Standard versions also remain available on Freeview. PBS America +1 (itself only available on Freeview), will close, but it is understood that the normal version of the channel will be extending its broadcast hours.
The above is not exhaustive, and other changes may be made, triggered by the closure of the temporary multiplex COM7. If you can live without some channels for a few hours, re-tune once from around late morning onwards on the 30th to capture all of the changes. If you receive signals from a relay transmitter, re-tune on the 29th, as you will be only affected by the changes on this day (and you only need to re-tune if you have a HD compatible device).
You may need to re-set your scheduled recordings, so may a note of any programmes you has set to record before re-tuning. Consult your device instructions/handbook or manufacturer if you are unsure of how to re-tune.
The temporary terrestrial (Freeview) multiplex COM7 is set to close in June, to allow for the frequencies to be used for mobile phone networks. The frequency is one of those in the 700 MHz band that has now largely been cleared for %G mobile phone use, with the closure of COM7 to complete the process.
This will mean some Freeview viewers will lose some channels. I say some, as COM7 currently broadcasts to a limited area, and by using the DVB-T2 transmission method is only available those with compatible equipment (usually branded Freeview HD or Freeview Play).
COM7 currently broadcasts a mix of HD (high definition) and standard definition channels, largely HD simulcasts and plus 1 timeshifts. However, Freesports, Now 80s, That’s TV (UK version), ‘pop-up’ temporary service That’s Music, Forces TV, and the recently moved Together TV are all ‘unique’ to this multiplex.
In total, some viewers may lose up to 15 channels, on the assumption that no channels will be re-accommodated on other multiplexes. Exact changes are yet to be revealed (or at least to reach me), so the exact number of closures may change. There is not enough spare capacity to accommodate all services on other multiplexes, so at least some will close.
It is up to the channel owners and transmitter network providers to decide who gets available vacant capacity. There is only one remaining DVB-T2 multiplex (BBC B/PSB3), and that is current full. This means the HD simulcasts will close, but may appear in the future if an existing multiplex converts to DVB-T2.
That leaves the standard definition channels, of which 3 are time shift versions of existing channels so are unlikely to be retained. That’s Music is a pop-up service, so will also close, leaving 6 channels needing capacity. It is unlikely that there is enough national capacity to keep all 6 on-air.
Time will tell if any of the services affected by the COM7 closure will continue broadcasting on Freeview, but most are available on other platforms such as satellite which are unaffected by the terrestrial changes.
That’s TV Gold, a new channel from music TV channel That’s TV, launches tonight (9th July 2021) at 9pm.
The nostalgia led channel will celebrate the music, people, events and arts of the last 7 decades, according to online promotion.
The channel will be available on Freeview channel 91 (limited coverage), and Sky channel 187.
Apologies for the delay in this post due to personal commitments.
Over the Valentines weekend of February 13th/14th, music service That’s TV re-branded as That’s 60s for the occasion, temporarily flipping to an advert free format of 60s music.
Traditionally showing music videos from the 1970s and 80s, the channel is introducing music from the 40s, 50s, and 60s for the first time, alongside local news provision.
Localised versions of That’s TV are available in some areas on Freeview channel 7 or 8, with national streamed version of the channel available on the Vision TV portal on channel number 264.
That’s TV, a network of 20 local and regional TV stations has temporarily become That’s Christmas. The seasonal service is offering a festive mix of classic drama and music.
That’s TV has recently become a music led service, maintaining local news and information during weeks, albeit in reduce amounts compared to when the channel first launched. Music is from the 70s, 80s, and 90s, with the channel found in some areas on Freeview, either on channel number 7 or 8.
This format appears to be successful, as in October 2020, the combined network attracted 4 million viewers. This is it’s highest ever reach, with the channel currently the most popular music based TV channel in the UK.