France launches digital terrestrial television
Télévision Numérique Terrestre, the first French DTT service was launched by the French prime minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin on the 31st March 2005. Branded as La Télévision Numérique pour tous, or digital television for all, it will have three new channels initially with up to 14 free-to-air services later. At present the service is reported to be restricted to 35% of the population from 17 transmitter sites, covering Paris, Aquitaine, Bretagne, Marseille, Lille, Lyon and Toulouse. Coverage is planned to increase to 50% of the population by September and 80% by 2007.
Raffarin has also been quoted as saying that 100% of the population will be covered within three years of the launch.
More details at http://www.tnt-gratuite.fr
Item added: 5th April 2005