TV signal threatened by 4G network rollout

THOUSANDS of households in Hastings and St Leonards could soon lose their television signal as mobile phone companies bring in the new super-fast 4G network.

Three firms, namely O2, 3Mobile and Vodafone, use similar frequencies to that used by Freeview TV.

But experts fear that this will cause disruption with TV signals, with some viewers losing whole channels.

Others could have trouble receiving pictures and sounds.

It is not known as yet when testing of the new network will be taking place in 1066 Country.

With the switch-over of TV services to digital, a band of frequencies previously used by TV is being made available for phone firms to offer high speed 4G services.

The new 4G service operates at 800 MHz, close to the Freeview signal, which runs at 700 MHz.

This means some viewers may need to fit a filter or use cable or satellite providers.

Ben Roome, director of marketing and communications for at800, which has sent out postcards around the UK to viewers who may suffer signal problems, said: “Unfortunately, we can’t say exactly how many viewers in the Hastings and St Leonards area will be affected by the rollout of 4G at 800 MHz.

“A big factor determining whether a TV will experience the problem is the strength of signal it receives from a transmitter, and this depends on a number of things such as distance from the transmitter, obstructions and weather conditions.

“One of our other challenges is that we don’t know where people receive their signal fro. We only have a prediction of where they are most likely to point their TV aerial. However, if national rollout reflects the results we’ve seen during our tests, we expect no more than 90,000 households across the country, with Freeview as their primary TV service, to experience disruption caused by 4G at 800 MHz – that’s less than one per cent of households with Freeview as their primary TV service.”

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