Goodbye red slate. Hello BBC One in HD for everyone… – BBC

Rollout of BBC One HD for the English regions on TV platforms
Late last year, we announced that we were able to start working on our rollout of BBC One HD (High-Definition) in the English regions.  
That process started with the launch of our regional versions of BBC One HD (along with the rest of our channel portfolio, all in HD) on the newer internet-connected platforms.  First up came Sky’s Glass platform, soon followed by Virgin Media Cable and then Virgin Media’s Stream platform and more recently BT’s IPTV devices, the TV Box Pro and TV Box Mini.
DTT – Freeview, Freeview Play and YouView
Today, I wanted to update you that by spring next year, we’ll be making the English regions versions of BBC One HD available on Freeview and YouView devices.  This will mean the end of the red slate on BBC One HD which goes out during our local programmes, like the regional news programme at 6.30pm.  By April next year, if you have an HD-enabled Freeview device or a YouView device then you’ll find your correct regional version of BBC One in HD at slot 101 – and you’ll no longer need to tune away to the standard definition version of BBC One to watch your local programming.
Digital satellite – Freesat and Sky
Also, by April 2023, we’ll be upgrading all BBC channels to HD on satellite.  This means that not only will we be making available the HD versions of BBC One for the English regions, but we’ll have the rest of the BBC’s channels available in HD, including BBC Two Northern Ireland, BBC ALBA, BBC Parliament and the BBC Red Button channel.
At the same time, the red slate on BBC One HD will also be disappearing for all HD satellite viewers and we’ll put the correct versions of BBC One and BBC Two for your region at the top of the Sky and Freesat EPGs for all viewers in the UK.
Closure of standard definition (SD) channels on the digital satellite platform
Unfortunately, to roll regional versions of BBC One HD in England on satellite plans, we need to close the standard definition (or SD) versions of our channels on the digital satellite platform.  This is not a decision that’s been taken lightly – indeed, it’s been one of the key reasons why we’ve held back so long in our HD rollout plans until now.  However, the number of SD-only satellite devices is now at a much-reduced level so to hold back the closure of our SD channels any longer would deny the benefit of all our channels being available in HD to a much greater proportion of the audience.  A few other technical factors, along with that much lower number of SD-only satellite viewers, make this the right time to start the rollout of our BBC One HD feeds for the English regions.
When it’s all happening
The regional versions of BBC One HD for Freeview/YouView will all be made available by April 2023 – you’ll find the correct version of BBC One HD for your region at EPG 101 (and the SD version will still be available at EPG 1.)  We’ll be publishing more details on the actual timelines for each region on our reception advice website nearer the time. 
We’re planning to start the satellite rollout in mid-January 2023.  As we’re still finalising details, we will be releasing the timelines for each DSAT region on our own reception advice website again and also on a special help website,, that we’re setting up in association with Freesat.   
The closure of our SD channels on satellite will happen regionally and in two main phases – and it will impact all SD-only satellite viewers in the UK. 
From mid-January 2023 to end March 2023 (phase 1)
On a region-by-region basis, SD-only satellite viewers will start to lose their local programming on BBC One and BBC Two.
These users will be automatically switched to a pan-UK version of each of these channels – these special versions of BBC One and BBC Two will not feature any local or Nations programmes.
The most obvious impact of this change will be the removal of the regional news programmes during BBC Breakfast and at 1.30pm, 6.30pm and 10.30pm on BBC One on weekends, and similar programmes at weekends.  At these times, the SD version of BBC One will carry a slate providing advice to viewers on what to do next to upgrade their set-top box to HD (if required.)
If you already have an HD-enabled satellite set-top box or satellite TV, then you will automatically get the correct version of BBC One for your region in HD at the top of your EPG (in slot 101).
SD versions of all our other channels, along with our radio services, will be maintained for all viewers.
By end March 2023
All our satellite regions will have migrated over, so by this time any SD-only satellite users will have lost their regional version of BBC One and have been switched over to the special ‘non-regional’ version of BBC One (see previous box)
If you already have an HD-enabled satellite set-top box or satellite TV, then by this date you will have the correct version of BBC One for your region in HD at the top of your EPG (in slot 101)
SD versions of all our other channels, along with our radio services, will be maintained for all viewers.
HD versions of the rest of our channel portfolio will all be on-air on satellite by this date.
April 2023 to March 2024
During this time, we will be reminding any remaining SD satellite viewers of the forthcoming closure of our SD channels.  There will be periodic messaging on BBC One SD, advising viewers of the need to upgrade and where to get more information on the options available.
By end March 2024 (phase 2)
By this time, we anticipate that all SD users will have purchased or have already migrated to HD-enabled satellite viewing equipment.
We will be closing all SD channel feeds on satellite by the end of March 2024 – so, anybody that hasn’t upgraded to satellite HD by this time will lose access to all BBC TV channels.
If you haven’t upgraded to HD-enabled satellite equipment by this time, you will also lose access to all BBC radio channels on Sky and Freesat.
Advice for those with SD-only satellite viewing equipment
To help upgrade the small number of SD-only satellite device users still out there, we’ll be providing details on what options are available. 
If you’re worried you might be impacted, you can go to our checking tool that goes live today on channel number 799 on your Freesat or Freeview device – the message you see there will tell if you’re all set up for HD or if you need to replace your set-top box.  If you are a Sky customer and you currently do not receive any BBC HD channels as of today, then this change will impact you. We are working closely with Sky on plans.
If you do have an SD-only satellite set-top box and you know that you are going to be affected by the changes, then this might be the right time to consider treating yourself or one of your family members to a new set-top box or television for Christmas.  High street retailers have HD-enabled satellite set-top boxes and televisions that can access the regular linear channels all in top-quality HD – and some of those, when connected to the internet, can also access online services like BBC iPlayer and BBC Sounds, along with a host of other popular apps.
Assistance for the elderly and vulnerable
For any audience members impacted by the changes who need extra support, we’ll also be running a help scheme to ensure no-one gets left behind in the migration to HD on satellite.  Full details of this scheme, along with the criteria for eligibility, will be provided once the switchover to HD on satellite starts in mid-January.
Again, whilst the help scheme won’t be live until mid-January, don’t forget that you can use our channel checker tool on EPG 799 on your Freesat or Freeview device from today to see if you’ll be affected by the changes. There’s no need to wait – you can upgrade to an HD-enabled set-top box or television now so you’re all ready for the forthcoming changes next year.
And finally…
In the coming months, you’ll be able to find more details on the changes, including all the regional timelines, on our reception advice website as well as on the special website set up in association with Freesat, our satellite platform partner, which can be found at
Thanks for reading.


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