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January 26, 2009

Future of Teletext in the balance

by David Allen

The media regulator, Ofcom, is questioning the need for the long standing public service Teletext, in light of the growth in digital and internet TV.

It is expected that Ofcom could recommend that Teletext may not have much use after 2014, even though the service has been available since 1993 when it took over the service on ITV and Channel Four known as Oracle.

Yet only around thirty six per cent of those viewers with access to Teletext actually use it.

Ofcom has already allowed Teletext to reduce its regional news services from nineteen to thirteen.

With the government’s plans to provide a broadband for all service, it is suggested that Teletext could become obsolete.

There will be a review of Teletext during 2012 and this is likely to be the pivotal point in deciding where it goes from there.



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