Leading UK broadcasters including the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 have raised concerns that too much focus is being given to mobile data services over digital terrestrial TV (DTT), as plans for new spectrum releases are debated.
Digital UK, a consortium of leading broadcasters, issued a report citing the value of digital television at £80bn to the UK economy, far more than any mobile broadband services, it claims.
The report comes as the mobile sector looks to gain access to more spectrum in order to ensure it can meet the ever-growing demand for spectrum being led by smartphones and tablets.
Plans include offering up Ministry of Defence (MoD) spectrum and frequency in both the 2.7GHz and 3.6GHz ranges, which would prove ideal for mobile spectrum needs.
However, the document argues that mobile services are already favoured too much over DTT, with 560MHz of frequency already allocated to mobile, compared with 256MHz for digital TV services.
However, Jonathan Thompson, chief executive of Digital UK, said the findings in the report proved that industry bodies such as Ofcom must not ignore the value of the TV market.
“This report sheds new light on the value of DTT for viewers, the UK television sector and wider economy. With increasing demand for spectrum it is critical that DTT remains a strong proposition with the same coverage and range of channels viewers enjoy today,” he said.
Earlier on Tuesday Ofcom gave the go-ahead for transport companies to be able to use satellite broadband services to deliver mobile internet access on the go, promising speeds will be up to 10 times faster than those previously on offer.