The media access report

Australia lags in take-up of digital TV

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Australia lags in take-up of digital TV

With the analogue television signal now due to be switched off in 2010-2012, only about 28% of Australian homes have upgraded to digital (according to figures recently released by ACMA), and sales of analogue televisions still exceed those of digital units. This is one of the lowest take-up rates in the world.

In contrast, the UK had an estimated 70% of homes with a digital connection at the end of 2006. This is expected to rise to 95% by 2010. (Analogue switchoff in the UK is currently scheduled for 2008-2012). This high rate of take-up is due in part to the popularity of the BSkyB subscription television service, and the introduction of new Freeview (free-to-air) digital channels.

In the US, where analogue switchoff is scheduled for 2009, the take-up rate is now about 55%.

Meanwhile, some European countries are way ahead of the rest of the world. The Netherlands and Belgium have now moved to full digital broadcasting, while Finland and Sweden plan to do so by the end of 2007.

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