Humax: World Cup will boost Freeview HD

Friday, June 19 2009, 10:04 BST

By Andrew Laughlin

Humax has said that next year's FIFA World Cup tournament in South Africa could prove pivotal in the rollout of Freeview HD, according to Tech Radar.

There are currently no HD channels available on Freeview digital terrestrial television, but plans are underway to introduce the service.

Back in 2007, Ofcom proposed the reorganisation of three public service digital multiplexes in order to create a free-to-air HD platform on multiplex B, which will be reconfigured in line with the regional rollout plan for digital switchover.

Some regions will be able to get Freeview HD services earlier than their digital switchover date because of the use of analogue interleaved spectrum - gaps in existing spectrum usage that will be used for the broadcasting of high definition channels on digital terrestrial TV.

Graham North, UK commercial director for Humax, told the website that Freeview HD could be in a "big percentage of homes" by the time of the 2010 World Cup.

"There's potential for parts of London to get Freeview HD early. I don't think that's 100% confirmed, but some of the regions will be available towards the back end of this year I think," he added.

"The majority of it will start to rollout next year with a big percentage by the World Cup and after that there will be more coming on board."