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HD channels on Freeview to reach double numbers
Al Jazeera English available in HD on Freeview
Following the award by Ofcom of the two new HD Digital Terrestrial TV multiplexes in the 600MHz band in July, we are pleased to announce Al Jazeera English HD will be available to over 50 per cent of UK households, including coverage in all nations, in time for Christmas. This builds on the recent announcement by the BBC that it will launch five new HD channels by early 2014.
Freeview is the UK's leading TV platform with over one third of Freeview homes now able to watch many of their TV favourites in HD. Analysts predict that this will increase to over 80 per cent penetration by 2018.
Al Anstey, managing director of Al Jazeera English said, “Our partnership with Arqiva lets us provide the highest quality journalism with the highest quality picture and technical standards. This means our viewers will have an even clearer picture of our in-depth eyewitness reporting from our 70 bureaus across the globe, and of our documentaries and programmes on the issues that matter to people in the UK.”
Mike Finchen, Director of Digital Platforms at Arqiva, said, “Audiences today demand more and higher quality content. We believe these new HD channels will provide a major impetus to the continued and strong uptake of Freeview HD TVs. This is an exciting first step in the launch of more HD channels on Freeview.”
We have confirmed that broadcast coverage of the new HD multiplexes will extend to 70 per cent of all UK households in time for Wimbledon, by June 2014.
The 600 MHz spectrum, which covers the range 550 to 606 MHz, was cleared of analogue TV on a region-by-region basis during the UK's digital TV switchover which was completed last year.
Kathryn Finch Head of Public Relations
Tel: +44 (0)7813 459951