Applaud Digital UK as switchover comes in on time and under budget
We've recently enjoyed the culmination of a mammoth multi-year project leading up to an event that initially provoked scepticism from some quarters, but ultimately came in under budget.
No, we're not talking about London 2012 - it's the UK-wide switchover to all-digital TV that we're referring to.
Admittedly, when Dame Mary Peters - an Olympic gold medallist - deactivated the country's final analogue TV signals at a transmitter near Belfast in the early hours of Wednesday morning (October 24th 2012), it didn't receive quite the same fanfare as when seven young athletes lit the ceremonial Olympic flame earlier this year.
But the digital switchover has been impressive nonetheless. In a very un-British way (much like the Olympics), the project finished on time and is thought to have been completed with at least £53 million of its budget left in the bank.
A national campaign to keep viewers informed about the process was funded by the BBC, with an initial budget of £201 million, but Digital UK - which has led the switchover - reckons it has achieved savings of 37 per cent over the course of the project.
What's more, about £260 million has been spent by the Switchover Help Scheme on installing digital TV equipment for more than 1.3 million elderly and disabled viewers. That means the BBC has spent less than half of its original budget, resulting in more than £340 million being returned to government coffers.
Forget about the financial side of things for a second though, because it's also crucial to remember just how important the move to all-digital TV is for the UK.
Not only has the work boosted Freeview coverage to ten million households in digital blackspots across the country, but it's also freed up vital airwaves to support the rollout of innovative new services - not least 4G super-fast mobile broadband.
We can only hope the government's much-vaunted - and oft-criticised - super-fast broadband plans prove to be equally as successful.
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