March 2, 2021

The 5G forces to retune the DTT and replace the oldest televisions | Technology

The 5G forces to retune the DTT and replace the oldest televisions | Technology


It is not the first time nor is it difficult, but all users and neighborhood communities have to retune the Digital Terrestrial Television devices (TDT) because channels 49 to 59 will disappear. The Government has approved the release of the band they occupy to allow the development of 5G, the new generation of mobile telephony that will use this spectrum, among others. The affected frequencies operate between 694 and 790 megahertz, which will be used to guarantee coverage in the most isolated areas. The term is one year. Something else, until 2023, will last the television sets and individual DTT devices older. Those that do not support the HD broadcast, which will be mandatory on that date, will not be useful.

Although there is still a year to reprogram community antennas and televisions, installers warn of the convenience of starting work already to avoid a collapse before July 1, 2020, when the whole process must be finished, according to the international agreements.

For the adaptation, the Executive has approved 150 million euros in aid to the communities of neighbors to cover the intervention of the installation companies authorized in the equipment. They will receive between 104.3 and 677.95 euros, amounts similar to those received after the previous auction, known as digital dividend, executed in 2015 for the current 4G technology. According to the installation companies, these amounts are enough to cover the reprogramming work and, in the first experience, they were granted with agility, says José Manuel Muñiz, of the Association of Telecommunications of Andalusia (Atelan).

What the neighborhood community should do

The person in charge of the buildings must contact an authorized installation company or with the contracted one for the maintenance of the community infrastructure so that a technician can evaluate first what installation is available.

In the event that a programmable control unit is available, the most common one, the technician will only have to reconfigure the amplification equipment to the new frequencies of each zone. It is the assumption that will involve the minimum cost, since it does not involve new equipment.

Antennas of a building in Madrid.


Antennas of a building in Madrid.

If the building still has modular headboards, a circumstance that happens in the lowest percentage of cases (between 15% and 30%, depending on the areas). The installation will require new devices, since existing ones can not be reused.

Individual user

Whether you live in a community of neighbors or have your own installation (in this case you will not have to touch the antenna), each user will have to re-tune the channels, as was done in the last reordering of frequencies. You have to go to the DTT settings and to "search channels".

For a while, as the process of releasing the band is completed ("as soon as possible", according to Muñiz), the affected television channels will be broadcast simultaneously in two different frequencies. To avoid confusion, the installers have requested that the warning be issued on the screen that the selected channel will disappear in the band that will no longer be enabled for television. The goal is to allow the user to select the new one and not include the old one in favorites or move it to another position in the channel list. As the procedure will involve adjustments throughout the year, Muñiz recommends not eliminating it until the release of the band in 2020 is completed.

Notice of


Notice of "Format not supported" when choosing a channel that broadcasts in HD on a former DTT receiver.

Recipient renewal

Regarding the emission format, the National Technical Plan of the TDT approved establishes the deadline of January 1, 2023 for the technological adaptation of the receivers, since all the channels of television will broadcast in high definition (HD). This transition will require the modification of home appliances that do not support these emissions.

From next year, all DTT receivers, whether on television or external, must be compatible with DVB-T2 and HD signals. Larger appliances must be compatible with 4K emissions and incorporate broadband connection capacity and interactive HbbTV services.

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