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Last Updated: Monday, 22 December, 2003, 10:10 GMT
Viewers may be paid to go digital
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Viewers may be paid to make the switch to digital television, according to an industry expert.

With the Government planning to end all analogue broadcasts by 2010, Barry Cox has said that some people may have to be paid to make the change.

Mr Cox, who advises both the Government and industry on digital broadcasting said such scheme has been put in place successfully in Berlin.

His views were backed by consumer body Voice of the Listener and Viewer.

Mr Cox said there were only two ways of making everyone switch to a digital source, such as a set-top digital box, cable or satellite.

"One is to pay people to switch, the other is to force them," he said.

German example

"My view, and it is only a private one, is that it will be a mixture of both."

He cited the recent switch to digital in Berlin, which saw the authorities give financial assistance to those people on benefits.

Jocelyn Hay, chairman of the Voice of the Listener and Viewer, said such a system should be considered for when the UK makes the move.

"In the end there will be some people that the Government will have to pay or help to pay," she said.

"If people are paying a licence fee, for instance, they have a right to receive something in return."


SEE ALSO:
Half of UK 'getting digital TV'
17 Dec 03  |  Entertainment
Freeview reaches first birthday
30 Oct 03  |  Entertainment
Freeview on the rise
29 Sep 03  |  Entertainment


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