RTÉ to use satellite in rural areas outside digital coverage

15 Jul 2010

As part of its digital switchover plans, State broadcaster RTÉ plans to use a new satellite to reach the 2pc of the country that falls outside the reach of terrestrial coverage.

Following the appointment of Mary Curtis as director of Digital Switchover on 1 July, RTÉ has just announced further plans for its Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) roll out, adding it expects to spend €70m on providing a free-to-air digital service to 1.6 million homes around Ireland.

The satellite component of this scheme will have an annual cost of €1.5m, said RTÉ executive Conor Hayes, but this will mean the entire country will be able to receive national television services for the first time.

In April 2010, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Eamon Ryan TD signed an Order under the Broadcasting Act, 2009, ensuring that RTA will fulfil its obligations to complete Analogue Switch-Off (ASO) in the final quarter of 2012 and in doing so will have its free to air digital television service up and running and available to 90pc of the Irish population by 31 October 2010.

For some basic information on the digital switchover, visit Digitaltelevision.ie, which is run by the Broadcasting Policy Division in the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.