Digital television is in 70% of UK households by choice at the moment. For consumers it is easier than analogue as it has more channels, uses more interactive services and gives a wider range of recording methods. Analogue signals use up a lot more capacity compared to digital signals. The other forms of transmission such as satellite, cable and broadband etc have limited capacity and are controlled privately.
THE BIG SWITCH OVER
The digital switch over is the switch from all analogue wavebands being changed into digital wavebands. The change will take place region by region and will all be done between 2008 and 2012. The border near Scotland will be the first to undertake the switch over in 2008. The big switch over is not only happening in the UK but in America as well. The reason for the switch over is that you have more channel choice in Digital. When analogue waveband has gone, it will be sold to mobile phone companies to pay for the money needed to pay back from the customer charges. It will be expensive for customers as people will have to buy a digibox in addition to the TV.
HOW THEY WORK
Analogue signals are transmitted continually by a variable signal. Digital TV encodes the television picture as a series of binary number then uses computer processes to compress it so it is transmitted in a fraction of the bandwidth or capacity.
ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES
Advantages of the big switch over is that the government receives a huge amount of money and reduce cost for broadcasters who will no longer have to transmit services in both analogue and digital formats and to pay for the analogue transmission equipment.
Disadvantages include that if you are still on an analogue signal when they have been converted means you will have to buy a converter or to receive a digital signal.