The OzTam figures we reported on last week suggested that subscription TV had taken a lead in the ratings, and since then the stoush between the free-to-air networks and Foxtel has intensified. Channel Seven responded to the OzTam figures by saying that the majority of the 30 percent of people paying for subscription TV watched free-to-air programs in prime time. Seven attacked Foxtel last
week, branding Foxtels DVR offering inferior in comparison to Sevens new TiVo digital video recorder, which will go on sale
this month.

THE ABCs head of television, Kim Dalton, has predicted additional
free-to-air digital channels and devices such as Seven Networks TiVo
will reduce the appeal of pay TV. Mr Dalton said people will increasingly be
presented with a very strong alternative, and theyll be thinking, I
dont need to spend the money on pay TV. I just think that take-up [of pay TV] is levelling off.

The Newshounds view?

With a lack of support for cable offerings, it looks like TiVo may well become the choice of current free-to-air TV afficianados.
As free-to-air increases its offering (the ABC is introducing new
childrens channels and Seven, Nine and Ten are introducing new
standard definition (SD) channels next year), Foxtel will be counting
on continued audience growth to retain its share of the market.