Around 21 million Spanish citizens and 850,000 buildings face, from July 2019 to June 2020, the adjustment or re-tuning of their Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) reception facilities.
The process, which fulfills an EU mandate aimed at reordering the pan-European radio spectrum, is known as the release of the Second Digital Dividend, and foresees the inoccupation of the 700 MHz band by Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) channels to facilitate the deployment of the ultra-fast 5G networks.
These infrastructures will multiply the speed of mobile devices, generalizing innovative services such as online health, the connected and autonomous car, or the connection of objects (IoT).
The new blackout follows the pattern of the one carried out between September 2014 and March 2015 for the release of the 800 MHz band (First Digital Dividend), and implies changes in the facilities of the users who, after the change, will continue to access the same digital terrestrial television channels in free and open mode . Citizens and communities of neighbors can apply for subsidies, the amount of which ranges between 104.3 euros and 677.95 euros, depending on the infrastructure to be modified.
The reordering of DTT is being carried out gradually throughout Spain. Being only exempt regions such as Asturias, Barcelona, A Coruña, Menorca, Melilla and a part of the provinces of Toledo and Murcia.
Mallorca, Ibiza, Formentera and more than 90 municipalities in the north of the province of Caceres have been the first to change to the new frequency. The next wave of the new DTT frequencies will take place progressively in Albacete, Almería, Badajoz and Santa Cruz de Tenerife.
The adjustment, which only represents frequency changes DTT channels, will not involve the acquisition of new TVs or decoders, or the disappearance of channels. Before proceeding to the total shutdown, the television stations will broadcast simultaneously through both frequencies so that no one is left without watching their favorite shows.
As of June 2020, the DTT service will be offered at frequencies below 694 MHz through eight digital multiples.