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UK TV history is made as digital switchover begins

October 17th, 2007 · 1 Comment

UK television history is made today, as the country’s television switchover begins in Whitehaven, Cumbria. The first analogue channel to disappear from the airwaves is BBC 2, to be replaced by the first group of digital services. Stage two takes place in four weeks time on November 14 when the remaining three analogue channels (BBC One, ITV1 and Channel 4) are replaced with a further 15 digital channels. The process will be followed region by region across the UK from 2008-2012, extending coverage of Freeview channels to 98.5 per cent of UK households, up from 73 per cent today.
Ford Ennals, Chief Executive of Digital UK, believes that the residents of Whitehaven are well prepared for analogue switch-off. A GfK/NOP poll indicates that nine out of ten said they had already converted at least one TV set to digital, while the remainder say they are planning to go digital by time switchover is complete. Says Ennals: “This is the first step on the road to a fully digital UK. Whitehaven is well prepared to lead this process. Most households are ready to receive digital television and we expect those yet to prepare to do so over the next four weeks.”

Tags: Broadcasting · Trade

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Ben Lawrence // Oct 17, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    Whilst its great news that the UK has begun the journey to digital, are people ready yet? In terms of having the right equipment certainly, but some might be a little daunted when confronted by the variety of options in front of them for the first time.

    So the industry, more than ever, needs to ensure that services are easy to use and that user interfaces are straight forward and simple to navigate. Get this right and set-top box sales will continue to grow.

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