German cable operator Unitymedia has removed the last analogue TV channels from its network.
Analogue switch-off took place region by region within five weeks across the three federal states Baden-Württemberg, Hessen and North-Rhine Westphalia served by Unitymedia. The Liberty Global subsidiary is the first German cable operator to make this move.
“Thanks to the good preparation, the switch-off was a smooth operation, both regarding technical aspects and communication. We now have more space on cable to offer our customers more digital channels, new digital services and Gigabit internet,” said Christian Hindennach, head of Unitymedia’s private customer business.
The company also made sure that customers with tube TV sets weren’t left out: They are offered the “Tschüss analog. Hallo digital!” (“Goodbye analogue. Hello digital!”) box for around €30, as a Unitymedia spokesman told Broadband TV News. This special box (pictured) is not available online, only through the telephone hotlines and local shops.
The regular cable receivers offered by Unitymedia cost €129 (HD receiver) and €399 (Horizon HD recorder).
As the next step, the frequency occupation will be rearranged from the end of August 2017, for example the digital TV channels will be moved to lower frequency areas while the DOCSIS channels for data traffic will be relocated to higher frequencies. Through the clean-up, Unitymedia wants to optimise the quality of its TV signals, among other issues.