• NHK World goes HD-only

    NHK World goes HD-only


    Alex Lane - Thu, 22/09/2011 - 9:25am Japanese news channel NHK World will close its standard-definition channel at the end of September and become exclusively HD on Freesat and Sky.
    NHK said the decision will save money on the SD channel's EPG listings and satellite bandwidth.
    Freesat channel 209 and Sky channel 518 will now be opened up to new bidders, with the Sky Guide slot expected to be particularly lucrative for its owner, Information TV.

    A spokeswoman told TV industry magazine Broadcast: 'We are very sorry for those affected, but as a public broadcaster it was not realistic for us to maintain both the SD and HD channels in the UK.
    'The decision is also based on the expectation that the HD channel will be increasingly popular particularly in the UK.'
    Like the BBC, NHK is licence-fee funded and faces political pressure at home in Japan to reduce costs.
    SD slots on the Sky Guide are very valuable because older Sky receivers can only support a limited number of channels compared to the Sky HD boxes.