First DTT trial in Austria begins (see above)

In Graz, Austria’s second largest city, a digital terrestrial television trial began in April 2004. 150 households were involved in the initial period, which lasted until the end of July. Four programmes were distributed in one multiplex: ORF 1, ORF 2 (public broadcaster), ATV+ (commercial) and a special interactive channel with MHP-based interactive services from ORF and various commercial TV stations in Austria. This interactive channel, called !TV4Graz, was on air in the months of June and July. The trial was extended into August with the programmes of ORF1, ORF2, ATVplus and their MHP services in 80 households. The scope is, to find out, in what extend, interactivity can be seen as a driver for the market success of DTT. In this trial the DTT infrastructure is operated by ORF, the Austrian public service broadcaster, whilst the Interactive Application Centre is operated by SIEMENS Austria. RTR, the Austrian Regulatory Authority for Broadcasting and Telecommunications runs the project management and the market research which is conducted by Fessel+GfK.

In the first half of 2005 there will be a contest for the license for operating the first commercial MUX-platform in Austria. The commercial launch will probably take place in the beginning of 2006.

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