at800 is holding a further test to help understand the extent to which 4G at 800 MHz may disrupt Freeview. Approximately 28,000 households in Brentford and Isleworth will be sent a free at800 filter ahead of the test, which begins on 29 April. at800 is the organisation tasked with ensuring viewers continue to receive Freeview when 4G mobile services at 800 MHz are launched later this year*.
The at800 filter is designed to block 4G at 800 MHz. Most people will be able to fit the filter themselves, though support is available for eligible viewers.** Only new 4G services at 800 MHz coming later this year could cause problems with Freeview. Existing 4G from EE operates at 1800 MHz and cannot disrupt television.
Simon Beresford-Wylie, chief executive of at800, said, “This test will help us assess any problems viewers may have with fitting filters and whether receiving one in advance improves awareness and understanding of the potential issue. We will have professional testing units and aerial installers in the area to help get Freeview services back to normal if they are affected by our test.”
The at800-branded filter is smaller than a pack of cards. It is a passive device – meaning it does not require a power supply – and simply connects between an existing aerial cable and television, or Freeview box. If viewers have an amplifier or signal booster the filter needs to be connected between the antenna and the amplifier.
If viewers have difficulty fitting the filter, they should visit www.at800.tv or call the at800 contact centre on 0333 31 31 800. For residents in buildings with a communal aerial system – where the antenna or aerial is not their responsibility – at800 will provide the building landlord or property manager with a free communal filter on request.
at800 has advised that if you’ve not been contacted directly through the post any interference to your Freeview service is unlikely to be due to the 4G test. TVs connected to a cable or satellite service are not affected.
Download a PDF copy of this release – at800 to send 28,000 filters to households in west London
at800 is the consumer brand of Digital Mobile Spectrum Limited (DMSL), the organisation responsible for ensuring people continue to receive free-to-air television when 4G mobile services operating at 800 MHz are launched. The organisation is funded by the UK mobile operators with 800 MHz spectrum allocations to provide 4G services – EE, Telefónica UK (O2), Three and Vodafone.
*4G enables mobile devices such as smartphones, laptops and tablet PCs to access the internet at super-fast speeds and is expected to bring innovations in business, entertainment, education and public services. 4G mobile services at 800 MHz and digital TV operate in adjacent parts of the radio spectrum. Equipment that receives television signals, such as aerials, amplifiers, and digital tuners, can fail to block 4G at 800 MHz. This can cause loss of sound, blocky images or loss of some or all Freeview channels. Freeview is the television viewers receive through their aerial. BT Vision, YouView, TalkTalk and Top Up TV also provide Freeview services. Satellite and cable TV services are unlikely to be affected by 4G at 800 MHz.
at800 will contact those households it predicts may be affected by this issue before 4G at 800 MHz is switched on in their area. It will also contact businesses, social housing departments, care homes, hospitals, schools and colleges to advise what action needs to be taken.
**Special arrangements are being made to support vulnerable people. Further information can be found on at800’s website.