Ofcom to review switchover progress in 2010

Ofcom chief executive Stephen Carter has told MPs the regulator will review the progress of digital switchover two years before London is due to be converted in 2012.

As Broadcastnow.co.uk reported, Carter said switchover in London could be delayed if switchover prevented viewers from seeing the London Olympics, which open a few weeks after London's analogue transmitters are due to be switched off.

Broadcastnow.co.uk said Carter felt a delay would be "manageable".

In July, Barry Cox, chairman of Digital UK, the industry-funded body charged with coordinating the 2008-2012 switchover programme, warned that London's winning of the 2012 Olympics could put back digital switchover in the capital.

"It was assumed we would not win [the Olympics]. Within 24 hours of the result the Department of Culture got in touch and said we have to have a rethink [about London]," said Cox at the time.

"We are trying to work out how we handle it, effectively suspending work for a few months. But if when it comes to it we do the regional roll-out a lot faster than planned, then we may have switched over before the Games. It is a very complicated plan and you have to assume prudence would tell us to delay it."

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