RTE has admitted that it is no longer on track to launch a digital terrestrial television service in September. It is a change of tack for the Irish public broadcaster that has previously insisted it would be able to meet the deadline, despite the withdrawal of the Boxer-Communicorp consortium from the licence to operate the three commercial multiplexes.
In a briefing reported by the Irish Independent, RTE director-general Cathal Goan, said it was now his belief that RTE and the new commercial entrant should “all jump together”. “It wouldn’t be reasonable to assume you could have both public service DTT and commercial DTT up and running in September.”
After Boxer DTT Limited withdrew its application, the Broadcasting Commission of Ireland offered the commercial multiplexes to the rival Vision consortium.
The switchover decision caps a torrid few weeks for RTE, which in June was forced to admit its projected losses for the year have increased from €68 million to €100m.