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Freeview HD Sales Pass Four Million Following Surge in Q4 Sales

Posted February 13, 2012 - Press Releases

Today, FREEVIEW, the UK’s biggest digital television service, confirms that after strong quarterly sales of 1.3 million Freeview HD televisions and boxes, the number of Freeview HD units sold reached 4.4 million by the end of December 2011.

  • 1.3 million Freeview HD TVs and boxes sold in Q4
  • Freeview HD television sales doubled y-o-y in December

The strong sales performance of Freeview HD is echoed across the product portfolio; year-on-year sales of Freeview HD televisions more than doubled in December 2011 and Freeview+HD now accounts for 30% of all Freeview+ sales (2).

According to BARB3, in the 18 months since the subscription-free HD service launched, two million homes are actively using the service – an achievement made in half the time it took Sky HD to reach a comparable user base (3).

Freeview also reports that of the 2.6 million Smart TVs that have been sold to date across the UK over 90%(4) are Freeview HD televisions. Viewers can access four HD channels (BBC One HD, The BBC HD Channel, ITV1 HD and Channel 4 HD), up to 50 standard definition TV channels and when connected to the internet, a world of additional entertainment such as BBC iPlayer, YouTube and the rental movie service LoveFilm.

The results are particularly impressive as Freeview enters its 10th year since launching the free digital television platform in 2002.  

Ilse Howling, Managing Director of Freeview, said: “2012 is set to be a landmark year for the television industry and we have entered it with a bang as a result of fantastic Freeview HD sales figures.

“Television remains an incredibly important part of people’s lives and Freeview has continued to provide the most-loved programmes in the format people want without the need to pay for a subscription.  Our focus now is to ensure we continue to evolve the service and give viewers what they want over the next ten years.”

The roll out of Freeview HD will be completed in October.  Currently 81% of the UK can receive the service, by the Olympics this will increase to 85% and the whole country will be able to receive Freeview HD at the end of digital switchover.

The number of homes with Freeview on a main television set is currently 10.6 million (5).

  1. GfK Lektrak, end Dec 2011
  2. GfK, (sales of Freeview HD TVs: 253,000 Dec 2010, 521,000 Dec 2011)
  3. BARB Q3 2011. To end Sept 2011, Freeview HD sales were 3 million.  Sky HD subscribers to end Q2 2006 were 38,000.  Three years later (to end Q4 2009) total Sky HD subscribers were 2.1million.
  4. GfK
  5. BARB Q3, 2011
  6. Kat Copeland and Sophie Hosking’s Rowing Final (10%)
  7. Bradley Wiggins win / Victoria Pendleton’s Individual Gold (both 9%)

Other emotional moments during the Games included Judo medallist Gemma Gibson’s tribute to her mother (8%) and Mark Hunter and Zac Purchase’s post-race desolation after the Double Lightweight Sculls Final (7%).

Over three quarters of the nation (77%) believe that London 2012 could be the best Olympic Games of our lifetime, whilst nearly as many (70%) think our athletes have replaced footballers and music stars as the perfect role models for kids.  A further 65% believe that London 2012 will inspire the next generation of sports stars.

Ilse Howling, MD of Freeview commented: “As the nation truly joins together to watch the epic action unfold on TV, what we have seen so far is surpassing even our wildest dreams.  In living rooms up and down the country, tears are being shed on a daily basis as the ‘summer of sport’ shapes up to be the greatest of our lifetime. What’s more, Freeview HD viewers can catch the best sporting action in stunning high definition -with no subscription.”

The research is backed up by Freeview’s British Pride Index, which has tracked the mood of the nation in social media throughout the ‘summer of sport.’  The Olympic Games has seen the most positive reaction to any of the major sporting events this summer.

Notes to Editors

*Figures according to the International Olympic Committee, 8th August 2012

1.   Research:  OnePoll carried out a poll of 2,000 British adults on Wednesday 7th August.

2.   Freeview:  Freeview is a subscription-free TV service offering over 50 standard digital TV channels, radio stations and interactive services (BBC red button) through an aerial. In addition, Freeview HD offers four HD channels – BBC One HD, The BBC HD Channel, ITV1 HD and Channel4 HD. With Freeview HD, people up and down the country will be able to watch a variety of sports events in stunning HD this summer.

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