the world digest


Soccer bounce

COLOGNE, Germany — Germany's public broadcasters scored a ratings victory over their commercial rivals in 2006 thanks to soccer's World Cup. According to ratings announced Thursday by the GfK agency, pubcaster ARD was Germany's most popular channel, with an average 14.3% market share, a jump of 0.8% from 2005. ARD sister channel ZDF took the No. 2 slot with a 13.6% total market share, an increase of 0.1% from the previous year. Cologne-based RTL slipped 0.4% in the overall ratings with a 12.8% average audience share this year. Sat.1 in Berlin was down 1.1% compared with last year at 9.8%, and Munich-based Pro-Sieben slipped 0.1% to 6.6%.

Who'll play 'Who'?

LONDON — The BBC is refusing to deny press reports that "Doctor Who" star David Tennant will leave the show after the current season completes filming. On Thursday, a spokeswoman for the pubcaster, responding to a report in British tabloid the Sun that said Tennant plans to quit next year, said the star is "totally committed" to this season but that it is "too early to say" whether Tennant will work on a fourth season of the revamped sci-fi cult hit. The actor took over the role from Christopher Ecclestone in 2005.

Channel surfing

MADRID — Spanish film and TV giant Sogecable has signed a deal with Vodafone Espana that will see it launch 10 channels on 3G mobile phones in Spain, Sogecable said Thursday. The 10 channels will make up a new platform called Digital Plus Movil that will run 24 hours a day and launch immediately. The company expects to add more channels soon. An initial launch offer makes the Digital Plus Movil service free until the spring. Thereafter, it will cost €6 ($7.90) for unlimited access.