Sky software update inconveniences few

01:43, Jan 31 2009

Sky TV is celebrating after a long-planned software download to its 700,000 set-top boxes caused minimal disruption.

About 200 customers called the pay TV company after experiencing issues with the software update, which was carried out in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Spokesman Tony O'Brien said it was not clear how many of its customers required a service call from one of its engineers and how many of the reported problems were fixed by customers' rebooting their set-top box.

The pay TV company decided to change the software on its set-top boxes because of an assembly error on the Optus D1 satellite that was launched last year.

An antenna on the satellite was set at the wrong angle. To continue broadcasting, Sky TV had to use transponders on the satellite that were originally slated for other customers.

The software update means its set-top boxes can now pick up the horizontally-aligned transmissions from D1's misaligned New Zealand spot beam, giving Sky access to more capacity that it can use to launch new channels.

Sky had all its engineers on standby and was prepared to stop new installs in the event of problems emerging with the switch.

But Mr O'Brien says the process went exceptionally well and Sky resumed "business as usual" after a debriefing on Wednesday.


The Dominion Post