Analogue switch off to generate TV boom period?



A report issued jointly by the UK’s DCMS and the Department of Trade and Industry unveiled that selling off the analogue television signal will produce a benefit of only E2.1 billion-E2.8 billion – unlike the E30 billion windfall from the 3G mobile phone licences auction in 2000. The money gained from switching off the analogue signal, covering a period from 2010 to 2026, includes projected revenues from at least 14 new digital national TV channels. It means the TV industry could be heading for a boom period, with extra revenues of up to E1,106 million a year. "When analogue transmission ceases, there will be a release of 14 channels of clear radio spectrum," the report said. It adds there is economic pressure to switch off the analogue signal in line with the government target of 2010. Warning that the "loss of benefit from delaying switchover is greater than the lower costs", the report says the economic benefit declines by up to E266 million for each year switchover is delayed.

Free-to-air digital services would be installed in 12 million UK homes if switch-off is achieved.