CBS Drama viewers have taken to social media to complain about the channel's recent switch on Freeview, which has reduced coverage.
On the 28th April, CBS Drama switched frequencies. It is now part of a group of channels broadcast in the DVB-T2 broadcast standard, which requires viewers to have a device that carries the Freeview HD, Freeview Play or YouView branding to watch the channel. Additionally, the channel's coverage has been reduced - so that even if viewers have the right equipment, not all of them will be able to receive the channel.
Irate viewers say series links are broken, or that they have lost access to the channel half way through a series and won't now find out what happened. Many have criticised the way in which the changes were announced and some have been telling a516digital about their disappointment in the loss of the channel and frustration over having to buy new equipment to keep watching.
Responding to the complaints on Facebook, CBS Drama defended the move, referring to the change as a "business requirement", but confirming there are no plans to move any of its other channels to the new broadcast standard.
Here are some answers to questions you've been asking in the last few days:
WHY HAS CBS DRAMA BEEN REMOVED FROM FREEVIEW?
CBS Drama is still broadcast on Freeview. Following a frequency change last week, the channel reaches fewer households and requires viewers to have equipment compatible with the DVB-T2 broadcast standard (Freeview HD, Freeview Play, YouView). For those living in areas where it's still available, it's now on channel 71.
I HAVE AN HD READY TV BUT I CAN'T RECEIVE CBS DRAMA. WHY?
There are two possible causes:
- Not all HD ready TVs are compatible. "HD ready" may mean that you need to attach an HD box, be it Sky HD, Freesat HD or Freeview HD to the TV in order to benefit from the HD display. This is different to having a TV or box compatible with Freeview HD.
- The CBS Drama signal does not reach the whole country. Please check www.digitaluk.co.uk/coveragechecker to see which channels should be available in your area.
WHY DO I NEED A FREEVIEW HD TV OR BOX TO RECEIVE A CHANNEL THAT'S NOT IN HD?
Freeview HD boxes have a DVB-T2 tuner inside them. DVB-T2 channels can be either in standard or high definition. Alternatively, look for equipment with "Freeview Play" or "YouView" branding - they've also got DVB-T2 tuners inside them. Remember to check www.digitaluk.co.uk/coveragechecker to see which channels should be available in your area.
WHY ARE CHANNELS SWITCHING TO DVB-T2?
It is envisaged that most, if not all of the Freeview service will be migrated to the new broadcast standard DVB-T2. This is because the Government is selling off a band of frequencies currently used for Freeview, to be used for 5G mobile services. In order to fit at least the same number of channels on fewer frequencies, broadcasters will need to switch to DVB-T2. The frequency changes are due to take place by spring 2020.
So if you buy any new equipment, make sure it carries the Freeview HD or Freeview Play branding, even if at the moment you can't receive all DVB-T2 channels. (More about DVB-T2 here)
I CAN STILL GET CBS DRAMA ON FREEVIEW, BUT WHY DOES THE PICTURE BREAK UP?
The signal carrying CBS Drama covers fewer areas and is transmitted at a lower power than many of the other Freeview channels, therefore you may be on the fringe of the new coverage area. CBS Drama is currently on the same frequency as BBC Four HD, BBC News HD, Talking Pictures and VIVA, so they should all be affected. You may want to have your aerial checked, to see if it's the optimum type for reception in your area, but do be aware that there will be further changes to Freeview frequencies in the coming years, so ensure any changes to your aerial can be future-proofed.
I'VE LOST CBS DRAMA AND I DON'T LIVE IN AN AREA WHERE IT'S STILL AVAILABLE. WILL MY LOCAL TRANSMITTER BE UPGRADED?
As part of the frequency changes taking place from the end of 2017 and due to complete in 2020, it's likely that the DVB-T2 channels not available in all areas, currently including CBS Drama, will be moved and may become available in your area. This will be a business decision. Full details of the changes haven't yet been finalised, with regulator Ofcom still consulting with broadcasters over some matters.
ARE THERE ANY FREE ALTERNATIVES?
You can watch CBS Drama via satellite on Freesat. For more information about Freesat visit www.freesat.co.uk or the unofficial support website www.joinfreesat.co.uk .