Spain: 2/3 of buildings adapted to DTT

Two thirds of Spain's buildings are already adapted to DTT reception according to latest figures from Impulsa TDT, the association for the implementation and promotion of the country's new television.

At the end of last year 65.6% of Spain's buildings with collective antennas were already adapted to DTT reception. This figure includes both old buildings requiring major technical intervention and new ones in which the interventions on their antennas are unnecessary or limited.

In 2007 the percentage of adapted buildings was 51.7%. So in the last year another 13.9% of buildings needing to be adjusted have been done.

But these percentages mean that 431,000 buildings are still to be adapted in the whole country.

Andrés Armas Impulsa TDT's general director said: "It's necessary to speed up the rhythm of digital adaptation for these installations, especially in those buildings placed in those cities affected by the cease of analogue transmissions corresponding to the first phase".

Armas added that "it's very important to realise the necessity of adapting to digital among the citizens and that it requires a certain time so the sooner they are aware of this the better. In this sense the autonomous regions must play an essential role in the whole process and also the city halls' in the way of informing the public and taking quick action".

On June 30 more than 1,300 cities and towns will undergo their particular analogue switch off and will only watch digital television.

However a lot of these cities have still to adapt their antennas. So the installers must play an active role in this not only installing but also promoting the new television in the collective buildings, says Impulsa TDT. For this phase the association estimates there are still 60,000 buildings to be adapted.

As for the sales of boxes they registered an historical record during last Christmas according to Impulsa TDT. In the group of integrated terminals, most of whose sales are concentrated in the integrated TV sets, their number grew last December by 444,000 units.

External boxes also saw good sales in the same month, with 369,000 units sold in relation to 183,000 as a monthly average during the rest of last year. And DVD players with digital decoder integrated reached 166,000 new units sold.

Finally the forecast of sales of boxes for the next months are to be increased due to a decrease in prices and the inmediate digital switch overs foreseen for between June 30 and December 31 this year.