Freesat viewers are to get a nasty shock this week, with the announcement that Channel 4's HD channel and All4 streaming catch-up service are leaving the free-to-air platform.
Channel 4 is citing a "very significant" rise in fees from Freesat as the reason behind the decision to pull the channels from the BBC and ITV-owned satellite TV provider.
All4 and Channel 4 HD will stop broadcasting on Freesat from Thursday 22 February, though the standard definition channel will remain. That's a mandate of UK broadcasting rules – all Public Service Broadcasters must make their core channels available on all platforms, though they've no obligation to serve 'premium' HD content or catch-up offerings.
Unaffected spin-off stations
Thankfully, the news doesn't affect the whole stable of Channel 4 stations. E4, More 4, 4seven and Film 4 will continue to broadcast unaffected on Freesat.
However, it'll make Freesat users green with envy that basically every other service – from YouView to Freeview to Sky – each has the full raft of Channel 4 HD and catch-up services.
In a statement, Channel 4 said that it is "[considering its] long term relationship with Freesat." But shy of cutting Channel 4 a unique deal that could put other broadcaster's noses out of joint, it may be a long time before the channels return to the Freesat service.
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Gerald is Editor-in-Chief of iMore.com. Previously he was the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Before TechRadar, Gerald was Editor of Gizmodo UK. He is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press.