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U.K.: Sky+HD Customers Rise to 1.6 million

United Kingdom satellite provider BSkyB said it’s received a large number of upgrades to HD from its subscriber base in the past several months — with the total number of households in the U.K. and Ireland signing on to Sky+ HD rising to an estimated 1.6 million.

This good news for HD enthusiasts comes to a geographic region that (like most of Europe) had a slower start-up to HD than in North America, although it had a more rapid growth in the U.K. of SDTV.

According to (PDF (opens in new tab)) Sky, an estimated 287,000 new customers signed up for Sky+HD in the third quarter — which Sky said is about three-fold as many HD sign-ups as the same period a year ago, despite an especially tough economy in Britain and Ireland.

Last summer, Sky announced it would begin rolling out some 3D content to its Irish HD subscribers sometime in 2010, using the same HD boxes they have now.