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Old March 20th 07, 01:03 PM posted to,,,
Adrian A
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Posts: 622
Default Sky 'auto standby' to roll out from today

Ed wrote:
On Mar 20, 12:46 pm, "Martin Underwood" wrote:
"Roderick Stewart" wrote in


On 20 Mar 2007 02:49:50 -0700, "Ed" wrote:

SKY is to introduce technology that automatically switches digital
boxes to standby mode overnight - slashing energy bills by
a year.

The boxes will go to "sleep" after 11pm if they detect they have
been used for two hours.

How on earth can a broadcaster detect whether a home receiver is
being "used" or not? When I'm "using" a receiver, either to watch a
programme directly, or to make a timed recording from it, I'm not
pushing any buttons or doing anything to it that could possibly be
sensed by the electronics.

It's not that the broadcaster is sensing whether the receier is
being used
after 11PM. I imagine that they will be broadcasting updated
firmware over
teh next few weeks which all the boxes will use to reprogram
themselves so
they have the auto-shutdown facility. Auto-shutdown probably relies
on i) is
the box in full-on mode and ii) is it recording a timed event. If
it's on
and recording, I'd sincerely hope it will continue working as
normal. If
it's on but not recording (eg because you are watching but not
then I'd expect it to flash a message "about to shutdown" which you
override from your remote to give you another hour or so "stay of
execution". But if you are not using the box, either to record or to
live, why leave it fully on? Why not shut it down, as you would with
or a TV? Are Sky boxes different in that they will make a timed
even when they are left fully on, unlike VCRs which will only do so
standby mode?

It will surely not try to shut down if the same programme is being
watched. i.e. it will have to satisfy the following criteria before
shutting down
Is it past 11pm
Has two hours elapsed since last interaction (e.g. button being
pressed on remote) Has the programme being broadcast changed in the
last two hours

Obviously many sports events and movies last over 2 hours and viewers
will not want a banner popping up in the middle saying the box is
going to go to sleep.

Also it's not unheard of for people to watch consecutive programmes on the
same channel.