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European Digital TV Subscriber Demand

Demand for digital television in Europe will reach a new record in 2006, according to the latest research from Strategy Analytics. Nearly 19 million homes will buy digital television for the first time this year, an increase of 20 percent.

The most popular option for new subscribers is still digital terrestrial TV (DTTV), with more than 10 million new homes added this year. But the newest entrant, IPTV, is also beginning to make inroads and take share from established satellite and cable providers. This report predicts that 16 million homes will subscribe to IPTV by 2010.

"Europe's digital television market is the most competitive in the world," notes David Mercer, VP, Digital Consumer Practice. "Competition between multiple pay or free-to-air services is ensuring that the transition from analog to digital broadcasting continues to accelerate."

The report predicts that 75 million European homes, or 47 percent of the total, will have at least one digital television service by the end of 2006, a third higher than last year. By 2010, digital TV penetration will have reached 77 percent, or 127 million homes.

The UK, with 94 percent penetration, will remain Europe's leading digital TV market in 2010, with Ireland, Austria and Sweden next in line. Digital terrestrial TV will overtake satellite to become Europe's largest digital TV platform by 2008.

"Digital terrestrial television is Europe's big success story," says Martin Olausson, Senior Analyst. "Effective standards and public policy support have helped to create a virtuous circle of declining costs and increasing broadcaster support that will help sustain Europe's free-to-air terrestrial broadcasting model for years to come."

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