The clock is ticking on the countdown to digital
television. Just 95 days remain until the old analogue system
is switched off. Nigel Benson talks to Going Digital national
manager Greg Harford.
Going Digital national manager Greg Harford. Photo
Q: The Going Digital change sounds technological.
Should people be intimidated by it?
A: Not at all. Going digital is a just new way of
receiving your TV signal.
Q: What do the changes mean?
A: For the viewer, digital TV means more channels,
better pictures and sound quality and new services like
on-screen TV guides.
Q: Do people have to buy new TV sets?
A: No. Almost any television can be made digital ready
with a set-top box. The important thing to remember is that
after your region goes digital, you'll only be able to watch
television on sets that have gone digital.
Q: What sort of cost is involved?
A: You don't need a new television to watch digital,
but you may need some new equipment. The cost of going
digital will depend on your location and what equipment you
need, but it's best to talk to your retailer or an installer
about your options. If you need a new aerial as well as a
set-top box, you may wish to have them professionally
installed. Installation costs vary depending on the size of
the house and the location of the aerial.
Q: Are there any other options?
A: Instead of buying equipment, you may choose to
subscribe to a pay-TV service like Sky. These companies will
install the equipment you need to watch digital TV in return
for a monthly fee. Your local retailer can provide further
information and advice.
Q: Why is New Zealand ending the analogue TV signal?
A: It will free up radio spectrum for other purposes
such as wireless broadband, data and telecommunications
Q: When does the South Island change completely to
A: Sunday, April 28.
Q: What happens if I already have Freeview, Sky or
A: If you have Freeview or Igloo or subscribe to Sky,
then you're already watching digital TV, so you don't need to
do anything. If you're using a Freeview-compatible device,
such as TiVo or PlayStation 3's Play TV, you've gone digital
too. If you have a second analogue set or a recorder, though,
that will also need to go digital if you want to keep using
Q: What should people do with unwanted TV sets?
A: The best way to minimise environmental harm from
the disposal of old TVs is to take your equipment to a
reputable, specialist e-waste recycler. The Ministry for the
Environment's TV TakeBack Campaign has been created to boost
TV recycling services in New Zealand. You can find out more
or contact your local council or specialist e-waste recycler
to find out what recycling services are available in your
Q: Will my video, DVD, or digital recorder still work?
A: Yes. Once your television is receiving digital TV
from a set-top box, your existing video, DVD or digital
recorder will be able to record it. However, if you want to
watch one channel while recording another, you'll need a
separate set-top box for your recorder. There are digital
set-top boxes that are also recorders, such as TiVo,
MyFreeview, MySky. These devices offer easy recording options
using on-screen TV guides. You may want to consider one of
these if recording programmes is important to you.
Q: What should people do if they are still unsure
about the changes?
A: For more details on how to go digital, visit
www.goingdigital.co.nz or call
us on 0800 838 800.