The German DVB-T2 roll-out will commence on May 31, 2016 with a multiplex carrying six public and commercial TV channels in urban areas.
The bouquet will contain Das Erste HD, ZDF HD, RTL HD, Sat.1 HD, ProSieben HD and VOX HD. This was agreed by the participating TV broadcasters with the media authorities and transmitter network and platform operator Media Broadcast as part of the transition scenario for the deployment of DVB-T2 in Germany.
The areas served in the first stage (see map) will be Bremen/Unterweser, Hamburg/Lübeck, Kiel, Rostock, Schwerin, Hannover/Braunschweig, Magdeburg, Berlin/Potsdam, Jena, Leipzig/Halle, Düsseldorf/Rhine/Ruhr, Cologne/Bonn/Aachen, Rhine/Main, Saarbrucken, Baden-Baden, Stuttgart, Nuremberg and Munich/Southern Bavaria.
The regular service offering around 40 channels – mainly in HD quality – will start in Q1 2017 in the urban areas covered by the initial broadcasts and in further urban areas. The distribution of the commercial channels in the previously used DVB-T standard will be terminated at the same time.
The public channels will continue to broadcast unencrypted following the transition to DVB-T2. To access most commercial channels in HD quality, viewers will have to pay a subscription fee. The commercial channels will be accessible free of charge until spring 2017, but encrypted from day one. The nationwide changeover to DVB-T2 is scheduled to be completed in mid-2019.
For reception, TV sets or set-top-boxes compliant with DVB-T2/HEVC will be required. They are branded with a green DVB-T2 HD logo (pictured) for consumer guidance. The participating parties want to determine further details regarding the transition in the next weeks.