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Top Up TV announces closure of service

Terrestrial pay TV provider Top Up TV is closing at the end of October.

The pay TV service, which since 2004, offered Freeview viewers extra pay TV channels, will cease broadcasting at the end of October 2013.

The service's fate appeared to be sealed earlier this year when it lost access to Sky Sports 1, 2 and ESPN - its core service of premium sports channels via an aerial. Top Up TV had gained access to the BT-hosted Sky Sports service in 2010. With the launch of BT Sport, BT decided to replace Sky Sports on terrestrial TV by BT Sport 1 and 2. ESPN UK was also taken over by BT. A failure to reach a carriage deal with BT left Top Up TV with no premium sports channels to offer to subscribers.

It encouraged its subscribers to switch to Sky to continue watching premium sport. Top Up TV has since then consisted of the Picturebox movie service and a residual TV Favourites service, which has been winding down over the past year.

Originally, the service was set up to offer a basic package of pay TV channels, which at the time included E4, Discovery and UKTV Gold. The advent of internet TV and the launch of services such as BT TV, Now TV and the soon-to-launch VuTV, meant that it was possible to offer a range of extra channels to Freeview viewers via broadband without the expensive cost of terrestrial distribution and without the capacity constraints of terrestrial TV, which hampered the original terrestrial TV provider On/ITV Digital over a decade ago.

Viewers with Top Up TV compatible receivers, including the Top Up TV Anytime box will still be able to use their equipment from 1st November for Freeview channels. The Top Up TV Anytime box will continue to be able to record Freeview channels. Existing subscriptions will be cancelled by the company.

Top Up TV: 2004-2013 >
A look back at the pay TV provider's history.

Q&A: Top Up TV is closing >
Questions and answers about Top Up TV's closure.

Article updated 22:46


  1. If I was to say I am upset I would be lying as it been a rip off for quite a while.

    VuTV has been certified on the same day Top Up announces its demise so VuTV been an opportunity to gain customers.

    Top Up TV could migrate its customers (with consent) via an "incentive" with vuTV as Top Up winds down!

    Anyone who still with Top Up TV probably wanting to go with Talk Talk or BT Vision or fit within VuTV.

    VuTV will not echo the same issue of spectrum capacity of Top Up TV which could be took away from them but still need to ink content deals!

  2. hip hip array, wonder what will happen to the capacity channel 5 own

  3. down like itv digital Top Up TV it was take out the black way and kill itself haaa


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