The digital switchover

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The introduction of digital broadcasting and the prospect of high-definition content are transforming television.

Starting on 17 October 2007, analogue TV signals are being turned off region by region and completely replaced with digital signals. Already, almost the entire population can receive digital channels.  Within 5 years, all the country will be able to receive digital TV and the analogue signal will be switched off.  

How to get digital TV

There are three ways of receiving digital channels.

1. Buy and connect a digital tuner to your existing television.

2. Get a television with a built-in digital tuner – these are called digital televisions.

3. Cable and satellite providers offer free-to-view and subscription channels . You may need additional
equipment for this, usually available directly from the supplier, and a one-off payment. 

Cumets tip

For your main television, we recommend getting a television with a built-in digital tuner to get all the benefits and features of digital TV. Even better, a HD-ready digital television means you’ll also be able to enjoy all the benefits of high-definition broadcasting for better-than-ever sound and images.

What are the benefits of digital TV?

Better choice

Freeview has grown to 41 channels, including the five main channels. There are dedicated channels for kids, history buffs, movie fans and many all-round entertainment channels. You can also receive digital radio stations through your digital TV.

Better picture quality

Digital broadcasts don’t suffer the interference issues of analogue TVs so you get clearer, better pictures. 

Widescreen TV

Many digital programmes are broadcast in true widescreen so the picture isn't stretched. That means great looking television that film fans will love.

Get interactive

Digital TV offers a host of interactive services, such as a choice of views (great for events such as Wimbledon and Glastonbury) or voting for a winner on a reality show. You’ll also have all the listings at your fingertips thanks to the electronic programme guide.

Plus, it’s all absolutely FREE.

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