Freeview is set to reach 2.5m homes by the start of next year as the DTT service reaches its first birthday.

Freeview is set to reach 2.5m homes by the start of next year as the DTT service reaches its first birthday.

Around 2m homes now have the DTT service with sales currently standing at around 50,000 boxes a week in the run-up to Christmas.

Freeview general manager Matthew Seaman admitted its success, far removed from the failure of TV Digital, has "outstripped everyone's expectations."

He said Freeview's TV and radio channel line-up, which will soon include a general entertainment TV channel from Disney, offers "a pretty decent choice."

One of Freeview's achievements has been to introduce digital TV to a new audience with research showing almost 75% of Freeview customers are new to multichannel and for over 90% of them it is the only digital TV provider they have in the home.

It has targeted an older demographic than satellite or cable providers with 40% of Freeview customers over 55.

With the average price of a Freeview box set to fall from£99 to around£80, Seaman billed it as "becoming an impulse buy".

The next stage is to offer new products that will give access to Freeview, including PVRs and interactive digital TVs in addition to the basic boxes.