UK Media regulator Ofcom has revealed proposals for a significant upgrade of Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) that will offer more channels and new services. The proposed upgrade will create capacity allowing high definition television channels on DTT â€“ on which Freeview operates â€“ as early as 2009.
It says the proposals would deliver significant benefits for: viewers, who would be able to access an array of new channels; broadcasters, who would be able to deliver a greater range of services and also the economy, by making better use of the valuable spectrum reserved for broadcasting. It is estimated that the upgrade of DTT could bring benefits worth £4-6 billion to the UK economy over 25 years.
Ofcom believes that the upgrade could be complete in time for digital switchover in the Granada television region, which is due to take place in late 2009 / early 2010. The new services would then be available as switchover is rolled out across the rest of the UK, completing with four HD services being available by 2012.