Britain storms ahead with digi-telly

Britain is leading the way when it comes to digital television. According to a report by Ofcom, the UK has the highest digital penetration of any country in the world.

As of 31 December 2005 digital television was viewed by just under 70 per cent of all UK television households, up from 65.9 per cent in the previous quarter. Take-up has not passed the 50 per cent mark in any other European country, states the regulator’s latest Digital Progress Report.

What is seen as a landmark is that, for the first time, there are now more digital satellite subscribers in the UK than there are homes watching analogue terrestrial-only TV. This is attributed by Ofcom to continued growth in BSkyB’s subscriber base and large numbers of households switching from analogue terrestrial television to digital terrestrial services, such as FreeeView.

In absolute terms, as of 31 December 2005, the total number of households viewing digital television services on at least one TV set in the home stood at 17.5 million.

Freeview apparently accounted for seven out of every ten households watching digital television services for the first time in 2005. This push for digital TV will certainly be welcomed by the UK Government, with its aim of switching off analogue TV broadcasts by 2012 in order to auction off the newly available spectrum frequencies for other uses.

You can read the read the full Digital Progress Report – DTV Q4 2005 website.

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