The Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA) recently reminded members of the public who are subscribers to the domestic pay television programme (pay TV) service of Hong Kong Cable Television Limited (HKCTV) to pay attention to contract-related matters arising from the cessation of the pay TV service on the 1st of June, and to approach in a timely manner HKCTV if they have any questions.
On the 14th of February 2023, the Chief Executive in Council approved the termination of the pay TV licence of HKCTV with effect from the 1st of June. i-CABLE, the parent company of HKCTV, has indicated that the cessation of the pay TV service will not affect the broadband and telephony services provided by the group companies under i-CABLE and the domestic free television programme (free TV) service provided by Fantastic Television Limited (Fantastic TV).
“For individual subscribers who have subscribed to the pay TV service only, HKCTV will arrange for the termination of their service contracts on 1 June. Unless the subscriber has chosen other options, the rebate, free months and deposit that have not yet been used by the subscriber will be amortised and refunded (if applicable),” a spokesperson for OFCA said.
“If individual subscribers have subscribed to combo services (i.e. a combination of pay TV, broadband, telephony and/or mobile services), i-CABLE will, upon the cessation of the pay TV service, continue to provide other services under the combo service plans in accordance with the terms of the contracts until the expiry of their respective contracts.”
On the other hand, some buildings are using the hybrid fibre coaxial cable network operated by HKCTV to receive free TV signals. HKCTV will continue to operate the network for transmission of free TV signals after the cessation of its pay TV service. Residents of these types of buildings need not make any separate arrangements for continued reception of free TV service.
“A small number of buildings are using the microwave multipoint distribution system of HKCTV to receive free TV signals of Fantastic TV. HKCTV and Fantastic TV are proactively and progressively arranging for making adjustments to the TV receiving systems in these buildings, so as to enable residents of these buildings to continue receiving the free TV signals concerned via radio frequency or other means. After the relevant adjustment is completed, HKCTV will separately notify the residents who need to perform channel rescanning,” the spokesperson added.
Existing subscribers of HKCTV can remove the HKCTV decoders, and connect their TV receivers directly to existing TV sockets by themselves at any time so as to continue receiving free TV signals. HKCTV has set up four collection points across Hong Kong Island and Kowloon to facilitate the voluntary return of decoders and related equipment by subscribers for central disposal, thereby reducing electronic waste. Guidelines for subscribers concerning the above matters can be found on HKCTV’s thematic webpage (csweb.cabletv.com.hk).
OFCA will continue to closely monitor HKCTV’s progress of implementing its exit arrangements for the cessation of the pay TV service and the relevant technical adjustments.
Subscribers are advised to contact, in as timely a manner as possible, HKCTV via its hotline at 1832 821 or email address at firstname.lastname@example.org if they have any questions or enquiries concerning contract and billing matters.
For enquiries about free TV reception, please call the above HKCTV hotline or contact OFCA at 2961 6333.