Five new HD channels arrive from the BBC

Five new HD channels come to the BBC for Christmas and beyond
This isn't massively relevant but it's nice isn't it

The BBC is hitting the go button on five new HD channels on December 10 (Tues), with BBC Three, Four, News, CBeebies and CBBC all getting high definition equivalents.

Not only will the channels hit Freeview, Freesat, YouView, Sky and Virgin Media TV services, you'll also be able to catch up with shows from those channels in HD on iPlayer.

The timing means that the BBC's festive programming will be hitting your screens in HD, including films like A Christmas Carol and events like the New Year's Day concert from Vienna.

High def? Most def

The five new channels were originally scheduled to launch in early 2014, but Alix Pryde, director of BBC distribution, says the gang "couldn't resist" launching them in time for Christmas.

Freeview, Freesat and YouView viewers may need to do a retune in order to see the new channels, but Sky and Virgin customers swhould see them automatically appear from December 10.

Here's where you'll find the new channels on your EPG after the launch on December 10:

BBC HD Channels

Where possible, the BBC says it puts the 'best' version of a channel first in the EPG, which means that, on some services, the HD channel will swap places with the SD channel. Sky HD subscribers, for example, should see this swap take place on December 10 (so, for example, BBC One HD will become available at channel 101).

If you have a non-HD Sky subscription, though, you'll have to go to the dedicated channels still - hence why there are two channels for the each of the new HD channels on Sky.

The BBC hopes to roll the SD/HD swapping scheme out to Freesat in 2014, but it is not currently possible on Freeview or Virgin Media.

And, as an added, er, bonus for Freeview customers, you can also hop over to channel 108 and enjoy Al Jazeera in HD from December 10.

News Editor (UK)

Former UK News Editor for TechRadar, it was a perpetual challenge among the TechRadar staff to send Kate (Twitter, Google+) a link to something interesting on the internet that she hasn't already seen. As TechRadar's News Editor (UK), she was constantly on the hunt for top news and intriguing stories to feed your gadget lust. Kate now enjoys life as a renowned music critic – her words can be found in the i Paper, Guardian, GQ, Metro, Evening Standard and Time Out, and she's also the author of 'Amy Winehouse', a biography of the soul star.