Digital TV too sparse for 2010 analogue switch-off



Digital TV will reach a third of households worldwide by 2010, predicts Informa Media Group.

But it warns that analogue switch-off is unlikely to take place in any country.

Although 365m TV households worldwide will receive digital TV via terrestrial, cable or satellite over the next six years, Informa says that 711m homes will still take analogue signals.

The report reveals that almost 15m UK households (59%) will receive digital TV by the end of this year, the highest penetration of any country. This will rise to almost 20m by 2010.

Despite the high digital take-up, the UK Government's plans for analogue switch-off between 2006 and 2010 won't happen, says the report's publisher Simon Murray, unless it provides major financial support.

'Until now the Government has said it's up to the industry to digitise the whole country,' said Murray, 'but will have to get involved by subsidising households if it wants to meet its target. I don't think it'll do that, so I don't think we'll see analogue switch-off until 2015.'

The US will have the highest proportion of digital homes by 2010, with 91% coverage.