The withdrawal by private German free-to-air commercial broadcaster RTL from digital terrestrial could be followed by more widespread rejection of DTT across the country. This warning came from Ulrich Reimers, a leading broadcasting expert and author from the Technical University in Braunschweig.
Reimers appeared to endorse RTL’s view that a transition to DVB-T2, which in Germany would not take place until at least 2016, would not make sense in the country given that consumers would have to purchase new reception devices at a time when they would be obtaining HD quality programming over the Internet. “Commercial broadcasters have said they won’t distribute their signals in some areas, so people simply won’t watch DTT,” he said. “The consequences are clear, people will move away from terrestrial broadcasters, the numbers will move away sharply and the introduction of DVB-T2 in Germany won’t happen. Forget it. The public broadcasters will have to ask themselves if it is worth it to reach 3 percent.”
MABB, the local media authority of the German federal states Berlin and Brandenburg, suggested in January 2013 that the Internet would become the most suitable TV distribution platform for Germany and endorsed RTL’s decision to exit from DTT.
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