Al Jazeera will launch an HD version of its channel on Freeview following the announcement of two further Freeview multiplexes.
As Recombu reported earlier this year, two new multiplexes will be launched in the 600 MHz spectrum, which covers the range 550 to 606 MHz, which was cleared by the digital switchover. This would create enough space for 10 HD channels on Freeview.
The BBC has already announced that it will launch HD versions of its BBC News, BBC Three and BBC Four channels by early 2014.
The international news channel will lease capacity on one of these new multiplexes held by Arquiva and should become available to half of UK households by Christmas.
Al Anstey, managing director of Al Jazeera English said, “Our partnership with Arqiva lets us provide the highest quality journalism with the highest quality picture and technical standards. This means our viewers will have an even clearer picture of our in-depth eyewitness reporting from our 70 bureaus across the globe, and of our documentaries and programmes on the issues that matter to people in the UK.”
Mike Finchen, director of digital platforms at Arqiva, said, “Audiences today demand more and higher quality content. We believe these new HD channels will provide a major impetus to the continued and strong uptake of Freeview HD TVs. This is an exciting first step in the launch of more HD channels on Freeview.”