Digital switchover is 'a mystery'

Many people are still buying analogue TV sets unaware that they will soon need extra equipment to make them work, according to a report from MPs. A parliamentary report claims that many viewers do not understand the implications of the digital switchover, despite a £200m campaign. It says the digital tick labeling scheme for digital TVs is a "mystery" to many sales staff and customers. Almost half of all TV sets sold in the first half of 2007 were analogue. However, once the analogue signal is switched off completely those sets will not receive programmes without their owners paying for extra equipment.

The report did find the switchover timetable, which is taking place region-by-region until 2012, was on track to complete on time. The report also criticises the government for "not taking adequate safeguards to secure value for money" in the digital conversion scheme. It paid £803m of licence fee money to the BBC to deliver digital switchover, without ensuring proper accountability for the way the money is spent, the report said.

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11 Comments

I run sky, so wouldnt need to extra expense of a digital TV. Or i want a PVR.

The point half bought analogue is invalid.

Not everyone can install Sky (planning requirements for dish), they may be outside of a cabled area so Freeview could be the only option.

At the moment STBs are a good way to watch - I know people who still watch analogue for the main channels (1-4 or 5 if you can get it) and only turn on the STB when they want to watch a digital only channel!

I would be very disappointed if I bought a TV today and found that it couldn't receive anything though it's built in tuner in just a couple of years.

I would probably want to take it back to the shop and complain about mis-selling...

The real point here is that manufacturers need to stop making analogue only sets and the retailers need to stop selling them!

lol it looks like neowin also doesn't know what the digital switchover is. you used the HDTV logo for something which as nothing to do with HD. if you can't find an appropriate image then don't use one. (although the DVB logo would have been more appropriate, or the digital tick logo)

Well, you can use this to your advantage.

I don't need built-in-freeview, and there was two versions of the TV I bought for my bedroom, analogue and digital. The digital one was £80 more expensive. Therefore, I saved £80 by not having the functionality of a £10 freeview box (I don't need it as I have cable up there anyway).

Analogue TVs aren't the "end of the world" - both of the plasma TVs my family has bought for the living room had freeview built in, and it's never been used. In fact, in their bedroom, they actually use a freeview box over the in-built service, as it offers more features.

All analogue TVs need are a clear label on them... all it needs to say is that "this product may not recieve tv without other recieving equiptment such as a cable/satelite/digital box."

Analogue TVs are far from out of use however, some people may still want them, we bought one for the PS2 we have. We didnt care if it had digital or not we bought the cheapest in the size range we wanted.

It is statistically the older generations who are blisfully unaware and buying new analogue TVs that may not work in a short while... in some areas they already do not work. I bet already TVs have been returned and people saying they do not work.

As digital equipment is so cheap it usually only adds a few £ onto the price of a TV now anyway. £80 and one person suggested is a lot more, but thats generally the companies ripping people off, if they all had it you would hardly notice the difference.

I keep hearing they aren't getting the message out there, but that's all I keep seeing is reminders about the switch and I have cable and it doesn't matter to me. The problem is they don't necessarily explains things for "dummies".
All they should say is if you receive your signals over the air for tv you may need a box.
If people who watch TV don't know this then they must be skipping commercials and well nothing you can do to help them.
As for selling analog tv's, companies weren't forced to changeover any sooner so why should they? Its the consumer that needs to be educated, but most don't bother to ask the right questions or pay attention to these things.

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