Arqiva providing round the clock community coverage
Arqiva has launched 24-hour coverage of Community HD on Freeview channel 109, using its new DTT up-scaling technology to turn the channel’s standard definition feed to full resolution HD.
Community Channel broadcasts original programmes that showcase the work of new directors and community filmmakers, as well as the very best of terrestrial TV. This new version of Community Channel, branded ‘Community HD’, is the first channel to benefit from Arqiva’s up-scaling technology.
Mike Finchen, Director of Digital Platforms at Arqiva said: “Having just become an official Corporate Member of Media Trust, Arqiva is committed to helping advance the organisation’s work in charitable communications. As part of this, we are running a trial to demonstrate how SD capacity can be up-scaled to HD. We have chosen to work with Community Channel’s standard definition feed and have up-scaled it at the Arqiva Multiplexing Centre in Feltham to 1080i full resolution HD. Coverage today is around 65% of UK homes and will reach a maximum of 70% by June 2014.”
Community Channel was one of the launch channels on Freeview, airing initially from 05:00 to 08:00hrs in the news genre and more recently from 02:00 to 08:00hrs in the entertainment genre. Already available in standard definition on Sky, freesat and Virgin Media and on Freeview channel 63 from 03:00-08:00hrs, the move provides Community Channel with the unique opportunity to broadcast round the clock in near HD on Arqiva’s new T2 DTT multiplex, and take advantage of the growing number of Freeview HD homes.
“We are hugely excited about getting 24-hour coverage on Freeview HD; it’s like all our Christmases have come at once,” said Alex Kann, General Manager and Editor, Community Channel.
“We are thrilled to be up-scaled to 24-hour HD. Not only will we reach a more diverse audience in 19 million UK homes, but we will also be better able to promote our drive for social change,” said Alex.
Caroline Diehl, Chief Executive at Media Trust, said: “The contribution of Freeview capacity, in whatever hours or format, is the most fantastic offer to Media Trust and to charities and communities across the UK, who can now reach so many more audiences to tell their stories and attract volunteers and donors. Community Channel is used by so many charities – from national ones to tiny community groups – and they will all benefit enormously.”