Research reveals what the public wants on digital TV

- Viewers are concerned about a deluge of soaps, chat shows, sports programmes and American imports as a result of digital television's arrival in the UK this autumn, according to Futurescope research carried out by the Lowe Howard-Spink media agency, Western International Media.

- Viewers are concerned about a deluge of soaps, chat shows, sports programmes and American imports as a result of digital television's arrival in the UK this autumn, according to Futurescope research carried out by the Lowe Howard-Spink media agency, Western International Media.

Half of the viewers contacted wanted more comedy films on the new services. Second equal were documentaries, natural history and children's programmes (46 per cent), with drama and thrillers also scoring highly (44 and 43 per cent respectively).

Football scored lower than expected at 20 per cent. Most viewers said they were already satisfied with current coverage.

Sport featured much higher on the list of programme genres that would cause viewers to turn off. Top of the turn-off list were American soaps (49 per cent) followed by American chat shows ( 47 per cent). Australian soaps were not far behind ( 46 per cent). Golf, cricket, boxing (all 35 per cent) and football (34 per cent) followed.

Mike Smallwood, chief executive of Western International Media, said: "Up to now cable and satellite broadcasting has successfully built market share on an abundance of sports and American programmes. Futurescope shows the public expect to see more quality programming if they're to be sold the multi channel concept of digital TV. They don't want more of the same."





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