Canal Digital sees strong World Cup boost

Spain’s winning performance in the football World Cup has boosted take up of pay-TV services in the country. Spanish pay-TV operator Canal Digital said it had signed up over 160,000 new customers during its pre-World Cup promotional campaign, and now has 812,000 subscribers to its Canal Plus Liga football offer.

The Canal Plus premium channel, which offered coverage of the Spanish team’s matches, saw an increase of 52,000 customers, taking its subscriber base to 1.4 million. The operator said the number of customers with iPlus HD set-tops, which also allowed viewers to watch selected matches in 3D, had grown by 30% to 180,000.

Canal Plus’s iPhone application has had more than 90,000 downloads, while Digital Plus’s mobile TV offer saw a 200% increase in take-up over the period of the tournament.

Meanwhile, operators elsewhere in Europe have also seen a positive effect from the World Cup. Cable operator UPC Romania saw a 25% increase in subscribers to its HD service during the tournament. The operator now has 12,000 HD customers, and has passed 250,000 digital TV subscribers in total. UPC said that of 4,500 digital customers who signed up during the World Cup, 2,600 had opted for the HD service.