Feeds

Ofcom confirms three Freeview HD channels 'by end of next year'

If you live near Manchester

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The BBC, ITV and Channel 4 will each offer a Freeview high-definition channel over an upgraded terrestrial TV platform by the end of 2009, broadcasting regulators said today.

Viewers who want to watch the new services will have to buy a new set-top box compatible with the as-yet incomplete DVB-T2 standard, and with MPEG-4. The transmission and encoding upgrades will allow broadcasters to squeeze higher bitrates into the same Freeview spectrum.

The BBC Trust is yet to decide what service to offer over Freeview HD, but the Corporation already broadcasts a mixed bag of its biggest shows in high definition over Sky, Freesat and Virgin Media.

ITV will simulcast evening ITV1 on its Freeview HD service and sub-let the channel to others outside prime time. It also plans to offer coverage of major sporting events. Channel 4 will also simulcast its normal programming in HD, particularly films and documentaries. Ofcom said would a fourth possible Freeview HD channel would launch in 2010.

The switch on will be staggered by region. Granada viewers will be first to get Freeview HD next year, followed by Scotland, Wales and the West Country in 2010. Central, Yorkshire, Anglia and Meridian transmitters will offer high definition in 2011, missing out on the 2010 football World Cup*, while London, Tyne Tees and Ulster will have to wait until 2012.

Ofcom said discussions with manufacturers indicated new set-top boxes will be on the market in time for the Granada launch. Earlier this year a broadcast industry group criticised regulators for putting too much faith in unproven technology. ®

*Following publication of this story Ofcom got in touch to say it will shortly make an announcement on using spare spectrum as a potential way for viewers in non-upgraded regions to watch the 2010 World Cup in HD.

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'
PM urged to 'prioritise issue' after Facebook hindsight find
BT said to have pulled patent-infringing boxes from DSL network
Take your license demand and stick it in your ASSIA
Right to be forgotten should apply to Google.com too: EU
And hey - no need to tell the website you've de-listed. That'll make it easier ...
Assange™ slumps back on Ecuador's sofa after detention appeal binned
Swedish court rules there's 'great risk' WikiLeaker will dodge prosecution
prev story

Whitepapers

Go beyond APM with real-time IT operations analytics
How IT operations teams can harness the wealth of wire data already flowing through their environment for real-time operational intelligence.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.