DNA launches HDTV DVB-T2 test broadcasts in Finland

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009 
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DNA launches HDTV test broadcasts in Lahti

High-definition (HD) programming is to be commercially available via digital terrestrial television for the first time in Finland. Finland is one of the first countries in the world in which households will be able to receive HD broadcasting via an aerial. The project has reached the test transmission phase. Having won the contract to provide both the network and the service, DNA launched the first test broadcasts in the Lahti area today.

DNA will make aerial HDTV services commercially available at the end of 2010 for 40 per cent of households within the aerial network. This coverage will extend to 60 per cent of aerial households by 2011.

The DVB-T2 standard, used by DNA to transmit the test broadcasts, is becoming the European-wide industry standard. Its advantages include 55 per cent more broadcasting power and improved picture and sound quality.

First taster during the Vancouver winter Olympics

The technical test broadcasts will be unavailable to consumers. Viewers can enjoy their first taste of HD broadcasting during the winter Olympics held in Vancouver. Consumers in the Lahti and Helsinki regions will be able to receive DNA’s test transmission from the winter Olympics without a special DVB-T2 digital receiver, if they have a HD-ready television and an aerial directed towards DNA’s transmitter.

“Following price cuts in home electronics, consumers have purchased HD-ready televisions and HD programming has been available for some time. However, viewers have not been able to benefit fully from their equipment and programming because the network has lacked the necessary capability. DNA’s new service will remove this bottleneck, and viewers will be able enjoy their first taste of it during the winter Olympics in areas covered by our test transmissions,” says Pekka Väisänen, Vice President, DNA’s Consumer Business.

The locations of DNA’s transmitters, along with further information on HD test transmissions from Vancouver, will be published on DNA’s website nearer the time.

Finland has around a million aerial households

The findings of a survey carried out by Digita and SANT in the summer of 2009 show that Finnish households have high capabilities with respect to viewing HD broadcasts through digital terrestrial television: 37 per cent of detached and semi-detached houses have broadband aerials capable of receiving VHF channels. Nearly 30 per cent of aerials in detached and semi-detached houses are HDTV-ready individual aerials.

In order to receive commercial HD programming in digital terrestrial television, viewers require a suitable DVB-T2 digital receiver or a television with an integrated DVB-T2 tuner. No suitable digital receivers are on the market yet, but they will be available for sale by the time commercial transmission begins.

DNA Oy is Finland’s second largest pay television operator in the cable television market. Currently, DNA TV offers several basic channels and around 80 pay channels.