Australian households embrace digital TV

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

Australians are embracing the move to digital television with an average of 82 per cent of households across the nation already converted to digital TV, the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, said today.

Darwin has the highest conversion rate so far of 89 per cent at the end of June, with Tasmania next on 86 per cent, Adelaide 85 per cent, northern New South Wales 84 per cent, and southern New South Wales 83 per cent.

The Digital Switchover Taskforce’s Digital Tracker Summary Report for Quarter 2 (April-June 2011) showed the number of households in regional Queensland that have converted had increased to 84 per cent during the quarter, well ahead of the regional Queensland switchover scheduled for 6 December 2011. This was up from just 46 per cent in early 2009.

“With 100 days to go until analog TV signals are turned off forever, regional Queensland is well on track for the switch to digital-only TV,” Senator Conroy said.

“The number of digital-ready households in the Remote Central and Eastern Australia TV licence area – which includes areas of South Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and Tasmania – has more than doubled since early 2009.

“This is a great result so far but I encourage all those remaining households to make the switch as soon as possible to avoid a last minute rush,” Senator Conroy said.

The Gillard Government’s Household Assistance Scheme (HAS), which is helping eligible households to receive digital free-to-air TV signals, will complete the 50,000th HAS installation at a house in Rockhampton today.

“50,000 eligible households have so far been provided with the installation and demonstration of a high definition set top box free of charge, marking a significant milestone in the life of the scheme,” Senator Conroy said.

To be eligible for assistance under the Household Assistance Scheme a person must receive the maximum rate of the Age Pension, Disability Support Pension, Carer Payment, Department of Veterans’ Affairs Service Pension or Income Support Supplement, own a working TV and not have access to digital TV.

More: Digital Tracker report