Major FreeSat push for Teletext Holidays

Teletext Holidays is to launch full digital services on UK web TV platform Freesat in the third quarter of 2009.

The company is also targeting a return to profitability as analogue services are shut down over the next four years.

The system will allow comprehensive searches of products streamed through the existing Teletext platform and will be boosted early in 2010 by allowing users to book holidays and other products via their television sets.

The Freesat service is expected to be in 1.8 million UK homes by the end of 2009.

Mike Stewart, managing director of Teletext, part of the Daily Mail & General Trust, told Travolution in two to three years around 50-75% of UK TV sets will be able to take a direct feed from the internet.

Advertisers on the platform will be able to upload additional content including product information, pictures and eventually video, Stewart said.

Full booking services will only be introduced to the platform once a complete security assessment and testing is carried out.

Stewart stressed that the analogue Teletext Holidays service would not be turned off earlier that originally planned, contrary to recent reports.

The UK analogue signal is being shut down on a region-by-region basis, with the signal in London and the South East expected to be the final area to close in 2012/2013.

Despite recent financial difficulties, which Stewart said were primarily as a result of running services on both the analogue and digital platforms, Teletext should return to profitability as it moves away from analogue over the next three years.

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