Ofcom, the British government media and telecoms regulator, on Wednesday published its plans for digital terrestrial television coverage.

The document, Planning Options for Digital Switchover (PODS), follows a period of consultation with the public, broadcasters and Crown Castle International, the US monopoly that controls the UK's entire terrestrial TV transmission network.

Key elements from PODS are ...

  • Anticipated DTT coverage after switchover will reach at least the same proportion of households (98.5%) as are reached by current analogue television broadcasts.

  • This should ensure that following the switchover UK households will continue to receive the nationally available public service television channels (BBC1, BBC2, ITV1 and Channel 4/S4C)

  • Currently, 1.5% of UK households (around 375,000) are unable to receive all four of the main public service television channels. Ofcom is to explore the means of bringing DTT to a higher proportion of UK households than the 98.5% presently reached by analogue.

  • PODS will also provide extra capacity for additional DTT facilities which could be used for interactive services, radio, television or other options such as HDT (high definition television).
For the full PODS executive summary, click here.

Data sourced from Ofcom (UK); additional content by WARC staff