Freeview HD survey: Film 4 and BBC favoured for spare slot

The extra Freeview HD slot should be filled by either Film 4 or extra BBC goodness, a CNET UK survey shows

Patrick Steen Special to CNET News
2 min read

The vacant Freeview HD slot should be filled by Film 4 or a second BBC channel, according to a CNET UK survey. The slot, forfeited by Five, has been given back to the BBC by Ofcom, leaving the broadcaster to mull over its options.

Our survey says CNET UK readers would like to see Film 4 take up the last Freeview HD spot. From over 90 votes, 35 per cent chose Channel 4's film station, suggesting it's not only Sky customers who are jealous of Virgin's timed exclusivity deal. We want our movies in high definition, goshdarn it!

CNET UK readers also secretly love the BBC so much that one BBC HD channel just isn't enough. 29 per cent agree that the void left by Five HD should be filled by a second Beeb channel. One CNET UK reader writes, "The BBC is pretty much the only corporation to broadcast anything decent."

It's the indecent programming that some jokers want, with one who voted for 'Other' channels suggesting Babestation deserves some HD loving. Comedy Central was a less manky alternative.

Only 10 per cent were concerned by Five HD's absence from the service, while E4 and Eurosport close out the poll with 7 and 9 per cent of the votes respectively.

Freeview HD is currently made up of BBC HD, ITV 1 and Channel 4, but with extra multiplex capacity given up by Five's withdrawal, the subscription-free service has one extra spot. At this moment in time, Freeview HD is limited to four slots due to bandwidth, but an extra space is expected to be offered in 2012. Five plans to apply for this fifth spot when Ofcom advertises its availability.

In the end it's the BBC's decision as to what it does with the additional space, but let us know what you think in the comments section. Should the BBC hold a majority, or would you like to see more diverse programming on Freeview HD?