27 April 2007

BBC and ITV to launch Freesat

Less than an hour after the BBC Trust approved plans for the BBC to launch a digital satellite equivalent of Freeview, the Corporation and ITV have announced plans to launch Freesat by Spring 2008. The two broadcasters have been working behind-the-scenes for months with box manufacturers to ensure the technology is in place: there will be a choice of SD and HD boxes, and around 300 television and radio channels are expected to be available. Satellite coverage is around 98%, compared to 75% DTT coverage, so the new platform is designed to offer free digital television to those currently unable to get Freeview.