Following problems with the switchover to the Mediaguard 3 encryption system, the Dutch DTH provider Canal Digitaal Satelliet is now offering a free receiver in exchange for an old (non-certified) satellite one.
The offer follows a similar action by Canal Digitaal’s sister operation TV Vlaanderen in Belgium (see Broadband TV News passim). In The Netherlands, current subscribers can swap their receiver for a Thomson TS4H SD when they visit a dealer before July 31. They can also choose to upgrade to an HD receiver, the Philips DSR7121 HD, for €59.00.
The only condition for the receiver swap is that people need to renew their Canal Digitaal subscription for another 12 months.
Viewers from both Canal Digitaal and TV Vlaanderen have been plagued by reception problems following the upgrade of the encryption system to Mediaguard 3. A large number of non-certified receivers and CI modules are not able to cope with the new system. (See Broadband TV News here)
In a related development, TV Vlaanderen has decided it will stop selling separate smart cards to its service from August 15. From that date onwards, people can only buy a card in combination with a certified receiver or an official CI module.