Second quarter subscriber growth was described as “solid” at Carlton Communications/Granada Media-owned ITV Digital (formerly ONdigital).

During the three months to June 30 the digital terrestrial TV service added 48,000 new subscribers, bringing its total to marginally over 1.1 million. But the broadcaster still forlornly trails satellite rival BSkyB, which is expected to announce a subscriber gain of some 150,000 during the same period.

According to ITV chief executive Stuart Prebble, subscriber ‘churn’ [defections] were held to below 23%, an improvement attributed to the advent of a new channel, ITV Sport, due to kick-off August 11. Around four hundred pubs are contracting weekly to the service in anticipation of the new soccer season.

Prebble also claimed that ITV Digital is on course to meet its break-even target of 1.7 million subscribers by the end of 2003.

News source: The Times (London)