The number of people in the UK receiving a multichannel signal in the UK has fallen, according to data compiled by Ofcom.

The Consumer Experience 2014 says that in 2013, the total proportion of households that received a multichannel signal fell from 96% to 95%. This ties in with a decrease in the penetration of digital TV in 2014 to 96% from 98% in 2013. One possibility for the decline is the number of people watching audio-visual content via an IP connection only, without a working television.

Students (15%) and younger consumers (16-34) are the most likely to say they do not have a television in the household. Among those aged 16-24 there was an increase in those with no TV in the household (8% vs. 3% in 2013) and a decrease in satellite-only ownership (27% vs. 35% in 2013).

Elsewhere the profile of multi-platform ownership remans stable. Just over a third of adults (34%) use Freeview only, three in ten use satellite only (30%) and 14% use only a cable service. Older consumers, those aged 65 and over, remain more likely than younger consumers to use only Freeview (40% aged 65- 74 and 65% aged 75+).

Among the old there has been a decrease in Freeview ownership and it is no longer the case that Freeview ownership is higher in rural locations

In 2014, however, there was a decrease in Freeview-only ownership among consumers aged 65-74 (40% vs. 50% in 2013) and also among those aged 45-64 (32% vs. 37% in 2013). In the 65-74 age group there was an increase in satellite and Freeview ownership (10% vs. 5% in 2013).

Whereas in previous years Freeview ownership has been higher among consumers in rural locations than among those in urban locations, this is not the case in 2014 (Figure 62). However, some differences by location are still evident. Cable is used by 5% of adults in rural areas (to be expected given the lack of penetration there), compared to 15% in urban areas, and a satellite-only service is used by 34% of adults in rural areas compared to 29% in urban areas.