back to article Brits confused by digital TV switchover, report claims

You’d be forgiven for thinking that analogue TV sales had gone the way of the valve radio and the Ford Capri. But half of the TVs sold in the UK last year were analogue, and most buyers still don’t realise that the sets will soon become obsolete. Roughly £200m has already been spent on advertising the fact that, by 2012, the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    It's not rocket science but some people really just are quite thick.


    Brit + Digital switch over = Confusion



    Chlorine + Gene pool

    ...already out the door.

  2. James Bassett

    Appallingly managed

    It doesn't matter how much money the government throws at "information campaigns" if it's still totally cocking up the switchover itself. In my region, we still don't have a digital service but the analogue is being turned off in April 2009.

    The Digital switchover website is no use. If I enter my postcode it tells me my transmitter is 50 miles away and in another country completely and that I have until 2011 - despite receiving a notice in the post telling me I only have nine months left

    That same notice in the post told me my options included Freeview and Virgin, neither of which are available where I live (and virgin certainly never will be). Until the government actually employs somebody with an Arse/Elbow differentiation qualification, people will continue to be confused by the Digital Switchover process and for one very good reason - the information they are receiving is confusing and bollocks!

  3. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

    less people watching tv?

    This must be good news! Oh wait, they *might* get smarter as a result, which probably is *not* a good news for some politicians or, possibly, corporations.

    Mine's the one with pocket telly.

  4. Chris Holt

    sensationalist claptrap

    this story is rather misleading, why is a TV obsolete if it doesn't have a digital tuner? even if it doesn't have a scart socket you can still use an RF modulator with a £20 freeview box

  5. David Gosnell

    Muddy waters

    A large part of the problem is how muddied the waters have become. Every time there's a marketing push towards digital take-up, it seems to be cunningly accompanied by some new potentially-divisive initiative that persuades anyone with any sense to hold off a bit longer, and a bit longer, etc etc. The timing of Freeview Playback, Freesat, the whole HD nonsense, iPlayer etc all are perfectly understandable reasons why the technologically cautious are playing the waiting game.

  6. The Jon

    @David Gosnell

    I agree look at the following approximate timeline:

    1950s Black and White TV

    1970s Colour TV

    1980s Teletext

    1990s Satellite / Nicam Stereo / Plasma

    2000s LCD / HD / Freeview / Freesat / Sky+


    2010s OLED

    See how the rate of change is increasing exponentially? Maybe the UK public have finally realised that a turd timeshifted in Digital HD on a 50" wallmounted flatscreen is still a turd.

  7. Martin Pittaway

    Average Joe

    Your average Joe Brit has been hammered over the years by successive Labour governments, the people's government. They have ripped into the pockets of their supporters each time they have come to power. In 1997 Gordon Brown's first stealth tax was putting the cost of petrol up to fund his future spending and now look at the price today. And the results are that Average Joe has little money to spend on consumer goods this far in advance. And it's not just in the home. Many business people buy on price rather then whether the product being purchased can actually perform the task purchased for. With a mentally such as this, forced on by frivolous spending, it is ever likely we are behind. The only rich people these days are politicians.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ha Ha

    ...I bet the majority of those "obselete" t.v's were sold by our favourite clowns at those DSG barns littering our country.

  9. Anonymous Coward

    Why are they still selling Analogue at all?

    If this thing had been organised properly, or if the consumer electronics industry had any confidence in it at all they would have moved over to demanding all new sets had a digital capability years ago. This whole thing has been poorly organised and lacked real commitment from the top.

    Part of the scheme should have included a cut-off date for selling obsolete analogue only sets. Various European rules were quoted at me when I asked why this wasn't done but the underlying truth is Government didn't commit the resources to it.

    Part of the reason is probably their own doubts over their ability to meet this schedule. Before Ofcom was formed and the dumbing-down started as career civil servants opted to stay with the DTi I asked the engineer at the Radiocommunications Agency what he thought about getting this done by 2012. As a real human being he was laughing at this for quite some time....

  10. Steve B

    Complete Fiasco..

    Take our area which gets very poor service anyway. The government think we are served by a different area for a start, which has its switchover date delayed till 2012, however we are not and our switchover date is April 2009.

    Our repeater transmitter was built using a mechano set back in the 60s when Gus Honeybun and Henry Cooper visited on a publicity train to launch the new Westward service. It was modified at some point to add on the extra channel for 4 but has never managed a decent signal for it. No capacity for anything else whatsoever.

    Various edicts have revealed that it would never be converted to digital and we would have to use satellite, luckily someone spotted that particularly as mosts of the listed buildings and apartments are not allowed dishes.

    Next, the transmitter is being converted during one week next year.

    Up until day one there is no digital signal available, from day 3 or 4 there is no analogue. Apparently this government forced changeover which requires every TV owner to buy a new set or a digibox for every TV AND video recorder does not come with funding to put a proper transmitter in place and so we will get Del Boys job which only provides half the existing digital channel packages and already has no extra capacity for HD or future expansion etc.

    So if a TV breaks today, no point buying digital as it won't work so you have to buy analogue. Meanwhile the salesmen tend not to point out that for an extra couple of quid you can get a dual digital/analogue set.

    Just had to buy one for my daughter and I lost count of the number of times we thought we had a bargain only to find that a model letter or number was different and this was cheap because it was analogue only or digital only.

    Even if these clowns are kicked out the damage has been done and next April is going to be a nightmare. I have already been told by one aerial installer that I need a new digital aerial which he will fit for a knock down price of £180. It wasn't a come on, the chap actually believed it. If they don't know what is happening, who does? The government want locking up for incompetence.

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