Russia's digital revolution

TV in central and eastern Europe is making a major investment in digital upgrades, according to new research published today. The tenth edition of Informa Telecoms & Media's Eastern European TV report has found that 32 million of the region's homes will receive digital signals by end-2011 - more than five times the 2005 figure.

Adam Thomas, Informa's media research manager, and author of the report, said: "The region is on the cusp of a significant move into digital. UPC, for example, is looking to digitise its networks starting next year and this will encourage activity amongst its competitors."

Russia looks set to become the region's digital leader over the next five years. At end-2005 it lagged behind Poland in terms of digital TV subscriber numbers, but is expected to claim first place during this year and build a comfortable lead by end-2011. According to Thomas: "An increasing segment of the Russian population can afford premium TV services, meaning it is well placed to establish itself as the region's digital powerhouse. While many Russians remain happy to receive free-to-air broadcasts, the increasing number of platforms offering programming choice is starting to stimulate the market".

Digital penetration will exceed 23% of the region's TV households by 2011. Satellite is actively upgrading to digital while, with several launches in the pipeline, IPTV is also looking to emerge as a credible alternative platform.

About Eastern European TV (10th edition)
Eastern European TV (10th edition) looks at present market trends, and evaluates the future direction the market is taking. It includes important illustrative statistics and reliable forecasts to 2011.

It contains detailed information on TV developments across 18 countries including Poland, Russia, Ukraine, the Czech Republic, Romania, Croatia and Hungary. It also allows you to pinpoint new opportunities and highlight territories ripe for investment. With three IPTV launches at an advanced stage in Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, and other launches pending, across all TV platforms, the report provides a valuable insight into their chances of success.