E4 Switch to Freeview Pays Dividends

06 September 2005

The decision by Channel 4, the UK's commercially-funded, state-owned television network, to air its digital entertainment service E4 on the UK's Freeview digibox platform has seen ratings rocket and the channel's audience share increase.

The late-May launch coincided with a new series of reality TV super brand, Big Brother, allowing an extra 5 million homes access to E4 in addition to the existing 10 million homes able to receive the channel through pay-TV cable and satellite.

Following the move from subscription to free-TV E4's audience share jumped from an average 1.04% to 2.83%. This will have been partly aided by the annual increase caused by Big Brother, but even after the series' completion the audience share remains buoyant at 1.9%.

Data sourced from MediaGuardian.co.uk; additional content by WARC staff