TAM says 55,000 households have yet to switch to digital provider

Sat, Nov 3, 2012, 00:00

About 55,000 households are without a television service as they have yet to switch to a digital provider, according to new figures from Television Audience Measurement (TAM) Ireland. The 55,000 homes, 3 per cent of Irish households, have had no analogue television service since the digital switchover on October 24th.

It may take a number of months for those 55,000, which excludes holiday homes, to switch to alternative services, according to a spokeswoman for TAM Ireland.

“We expect these people to change over the coming months, as has been the case in other European countries [which] have already experienced the switch and we will be continuing to track this,” she said.

A spokesman for the Department of Communications said he was surprised that so many households remained without a TV service. “The figures are surprising,” he said. “They don’t seem to tally with the information we have from our digital champions who are located in every county across Ireland.”

Just 229 people called the digital switchover helpline in the two days following the analogue signal being turned off – fewer than the department expected.

A spokesman for Age Action Ireland said he was surprised at the figure. “We would ask people with older relatives or neighbours to visit them and see if they . . . are having trouble moving to digital,” he said.