Abertis Telecom and the Spanish Ministry of Industry have started HD test transmissions in Madrid and Barcelona on a dedicated DTT multiplex.
TVE HD, Canal+ HD, Telecinco HD and Go TV HD are available in HD in the two cities. The pilot transmissions are only technical tests and do not guarantee a licence for the four channels. The tests are meant to verify the quality of different codecs and data rates.
The new licences will be issued before the launch of new multiplexes, that are due to come on the air this June following the complete digital switchover.
The fact that TVE, Go TV and premium broadcaster Canal+ are taking part in the pilot comes as no surprise, but commercial broadcaster Telecinco was not expected to be interested in taking HD capacity.