By George A. Smith, AFN EuropeMay 21, 2013
MANNHEIM, Germany -- The American Forces Network Europe is eliminating one of its two satellite transponders in order to reduce redundant capability and decrease overall operating cost. This will require decoder owners to make minor changes from June 4-24 to ensure they continue to receive AFN.
"This change is necessary to align budget constrained operations and continue to provide quality AFN service," said AFN Europe Commander Lt. Col. Sherri Reed. "But we're doing all we can to help. Starting June 4, use our app to view easy-to-understand instructions at www.afneurope.net, as well as all of the channel changes. You can also get help by calling our network operation center 24/7 at DSN (314) 634-8228 or +39-044-471-8228."
All AFN Europe decoder owners, including U.S. consulates and embassies, must change decoder frequency and net ID settings between June 4-24 or they will be unable to receive AFN satellite radio and TV channels.
Viewers who get their AFN TV service via on-base cable from a provider such as Germany's TKS do not have to do anything. Contractors will be making the necessary changes. AFN technicians will make the necessary changes in Afghanistan.
The changes will result in a realignment of some satellite radio and TV channels. Decoder owners will notice more changes than viewers who get their AFN from on-base cable. Twelve redundant AFN prime Atlantic channels and AFN prime Freedom will no longer be available.
These decoder channels offered the same TV shows with local community messages targeted toward specific military installations. AFN prime Freedom time-shifted AFN prime Atlantic shows and targeted TV messages exclusively to personnel serving in Afghanistan.
The AFN Europe audience will still get local community messages on radio, www.afneurope.net, social media and AFN 360: Internet Radio. AFN Europe will air the TV spots for the U.S. military serving in Afghanistan on AFN sports.
In preparation for AFN migrating to an upgraded digital signal later on this year, viewers should not purchase or lease any decoder that is not the newest model, the CISCO D9865. When the switch to this digital signal occurs, all AFN decoders other than the D9865 will no longer function.
As with all of DoD, AFN Europe anticipates changes this year as it works to provide the American military with quality entertainment and command information, while simultaneously being good stewards of taxpayer dollars.