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Sky Digital Explained

Satellite TV is available to around 98% of the UK population - offering much higher availability than Freeview or Cable. Satellite TV also offers the widest choice of digital TV channels in the UK.

Sky Digital DishIn most cases, satellite TV means Sky Digital. Sky Digital is fully ready for the digital switchover.

Sky is received using a satellite dish that's connected to a set-top box, that in turn plugs into your telly.

The Sky Digital digibox set-top box can connect to a telly via a SCART lead, HDMI lead (for high definition) or a standard co-ax aerial lead.

Sky Digital offers the widest choice of TV channels - Nearly 500 English TV channels are available via Sky, not counting foreign language services or the digital radio stations available on the Sky system.

With Sky TV, you do have to pay a monthly subscription - the price for the basic package is £21.50 a month. Sky will call at an agreed time (including weekends) to install everything for you. You can get full details as well as ordering Sky, at


Subscription-free satellite TV is possible though. Sky offers a Pay-once, Watch-forever service for a one off fee, and in 2008, Freesat started - a joint venture between BBC and ITV offering subscription-free channels and high-definition. The adventurous can also buy a DIY kit and install their own dish and decoder (Kits from More on the subscription-free options on our Satellite page

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