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Ofcom delays local DTT licences

UK regulator Ofcom is to delay a decision on awarding local TV licences in key cities including London while it awaits additional information from applicants.

According to reports the process of awarding local DTT licences in cities including London, Leeds and Manchester is likely to be delayed by three months while the regulator asks applicants to clarify how much original content they will provide and the extent of their news coverage.

An Ofcom spokesman was cited by the MediaGuardian website as saying that Ofcom had decided to ask for clarification from the remaining licence applicants after asking a number of existing franchise winners to clarify their programming plans.

Separately, Ofcom has re-awarded licences to the franchise winners of the Nottingham and Sheffield franchises after discovering minor irregularities in the original processes.

Ofcom last week unveiled proposals for the use of ‘white space’ spectrum between frequency bands that have been reserved for digital TV broadcasting. Ofcom believes this spectrum could be used for rural wireless broadband access or new machine-to-machine networks.

Tags: Ofcom, UK