Digital Terrestrial: changes to the channels at the end of November

The year 2022 is approaching and, with it, the refarming of frequencies that will cause the disappearance of many local broadcasters: here is what is happening to the channels in these days and how it is going in Sardinia

The ballet of broadcasters on Digital Terrestrial is back, with several changes in recent days both at regional and national level. Numerous, in particular, the LCN numbering changes in implementation of the recent decree of the Ministry of Economic Development, which has made official the new list of channel numbers.

New numbering due, above all, to prepare the next technical transition coming in January, when in many regions of Northern Italy will be released the frequencies of the now famous "700 band", with the equally famous "refarming of frequencies". Refarming that, among other things, is already underway in Sardinia with a busy schedule of frequency and channel shifts that, unfortunately, also records the closure of historic broadcasters such as Olbia TV, which has been transmitting since 1978. Previously, Telegi, Canale 12, Tele Radio Maristella and Super TV had also closed. A similar scenario could occur from January in Northern Italy, where there are too many local broadcasters to all fit into the smaller number of frequencies available from 2022.

Digital Terrestrial: what's new at the end of November

At a national level, there are above all changes in the LCN numbering of channels (here we explain what LCN means), sometimes accompanied by the passage of the broadcaster from one MUX to another.

In the MUX Timb 3, for example, the channels Paramount Network and Super! enter with numbering 27 and 47. In MUX Timb 1 the Juwelo channel moves from number 510 to 526 (but remains visible on LCN 133 in MUX Rete A 2). The Italian-Romanian broadcaster IT Channel (formerly Rochannel Diaspora) is now present on LCN 221, inside the MUX Retecapri.

New also for radio channels: in the MUX Timb 2 the duplicate of RDS Social TV enters, while in the MUX Canale Italia the duplicate of Radio Padania Libera enters.

Digitale Terrestre: what's happening in Sardinia

Although it is of interest only to the citizens of that Region, given the insular character of Sardinia, it is interesting to take stock of the situation on Sardinian digital terrestrial television. This is because what is happening in Sardinia in these days will happen, starting from January 2022 and with different timing from Region to Region, also in other parts of Italy.

As we well know, TV broadcasters must free the frequencies already assigned by the State auction to telephone companies, which will use them for the 5G network. Thanks to the switch from the Mpeg-2 codec to the Mpeg-4 one, it is possible to transmit more broadcasters on the same frequency but, in spite of this, in many areas of Italy the remaining frequencies will be too few.

In Sardinia, for example, already from November 15 (and until December 2) TV repeaters broadcasting on frequencies in the 700 MHz band are being switched off. In most of the island the process is already finished, only the territories of Ogliastra and Sarrabus remain.

There have been 42 applications for new frequencies from local Sardinian broadcasters, but only 29 have been accepted by the Ministry of Economic Development.