U.K. Begins Digital Switchover
[10-17-07 – Satellite Today] Digital television switchover officially began in the United Kingdom Oct. 17, as thousands of homes the north of England received digital channels for the first time.
At about 2 a.m., the analog version of BBC Two was replaced with the first group of digital services. On Nov. 14, the remaining three analog channels — BBC One, ITV1 and Channel 4 — will be replaced with another 15 digital channels. Homes will have access to 20 Freeview channels, including BBC Three and Four, BBC News 24, ITV digital channels, E4, More 4 and 10 radio networks.
Digital television penetration in the United Kingdom already is about 85 percent. Freeview, the digital terrestrial television offering already is in more than 8 million homes, and BSkyB, the leading satellite pay-TV operator, also has more than 8 million subscribers.
The United Kingdom intends to be all digital by 2012.