Two out of three homes in Brighton and Hove could lose their TV signal because of new mobile phone interference.

Some 80,000 homes in the city are being warned that tests of 4G – the new generation of mobile phone technology – could disrupt Freeview, leading to no sound, “blocky images” or even the loss of some or all channels.

at800, the organisation tasked with ensuring viewers continue to receive Freeview when 4G mobile services are launched, said the masts would be turned on from mid May, but refused to give the exact date.

The new technology is expected to bring innovations in business, entertainment, education and public services.

It will help smart phones, laptops and tablet PCs to access the internet at super-fast speeds.

But Brighton and Hove is a particular challenge because of its hilly terrain which causes interference and the fact the frequency for Freeview is very close to that for 4G.

The 80,000 affected addresses will be sent postcards explaining that 4G will be activated. 2,424 of them are being sent a filter, which blocks out the signal, before the trial begins.

at800 will also contact businesses, social housing departments, care homes, hospitals, schools and colleges to give advice.

Extra support

Simon Beresford-Wylie, the chief executive of at800, said: “We urge viewers to call us should they see any new problems with their Freeview reception.”

Some £20 million is being set aside to provide additional support to the elderly and those with disabilities.

Frances Tonks, an Age UK trustee, said: “It will really affect older people because the TV set is their friend and a window to the outside world.

"If there is interference it might be upsetting for people who can sometimes be confused by technical issues.”

For more information, visit or call 0333 3131800.

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