You will still need to keep your Sky viewing card. If you stop subscribing on a Sky contract, you can keep using that card to watch 5USA, 5* and PICK TV, the so-called "free-to-view" channels. (All ITV channels are free-to-air).
The Sky Conditional Access system allows them to control what your box, normally supplied 'free' by Sky, can display. The record and playback functions are also controlled via that system so they turn such features off when your subscription ceases. You can, I understand, pay extra to keep usage of the previously recorded programmes for a time. You should check on the Sky website for more information.
The Sky Viewing Card determines which regional variations you can receive within the 'normal' progtramme number range, out of area services often being placed in the 800+ programme number range.
The term 'scrambling' was widely used and still is by some to describe the effects of the Conditional Access system, but the actuall operation differs with the digitally encoded signals compared to the analogue ones. Those often looked like a jumbled set of lines that did allow a partial sighting of the content if you studied it very closely. With digital encoding and CA you don't see anything unless your box is authorised to display it.
The 'pirate' cards that used to allow viewing of Sky services were not only illegal but Sky took firm legal action against the sellers/providers of such - they guard their service and revenue stream very carefully.
Not sure why you are unable to watch Dave, my Sky +HD box does show it and I enjoy some of the programmes. I know that some programme channels are not available if you do not subscribe to a particular viewing package. We don't have access to the Sky Movies, Sky Sports, etc as we just don't watch them enough to warrant the extra expense. What you are able to view does depend on your chosen Sky package.
hi, I've been using a Sky box as Freesat with no problems. However I've tried to change the box to Sky+ HD but it says "29 no satellitesignal is being received". Can anyone tell me why this is? Can you use the Sky+ HD box without Sky subscription? Thanks
Lisa: Yes, but it will only act like a standard box, as the recording and playback side of the box is inoperative unless a subscription is in force, Sky having cancelled the codes necessary for that side of the box to operate.
The other point being, that you only require one of the two leads from the dish to be connected into the LNB1 input, as LNB2 is mainly used for recording, which of course you are unable to do. Also, and although not really being necessary, but its advisable to got into the boxes set up menu concerned with the LNB and select "single input operation" as this on most boxes stops the error 29 warning from appearing.