83 per cent of New Zealand watching digital television

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

New Zealand will start going digital in seven months and 83 per cent of households are ready for it, an increase of four per cent compared to the previous quarter.

The transition from analogue to digital television begins on 30 September when Hawke’s Bay and the West Coast of the South Island go digital. The rest of the country will go digital in stages over 2013 with the Upper North Island the last to make the switch on 30 November 2013.

The West Coast and the Waikato region have the highest proportion of households currently watching digital television at 92 per cent.

“Television is a leading leisure activity in many New Zealand households and it’s great that so many Kiwis have already gone digital and are enjoying more channels and better picture quality,” said Going Digital National Manager Greg Harford.

The figures are taken from the Digital Tracker survey undertaken on behalf of Going Digital by Colmar Brunton and tracks results from November 2011 – January 2012.

The figures also show that of those homes that are yet to go digital 19 per cent say they are very likely to do so in the next six months.

Mr Harford says the figures are also a call to action for those households not yet watching digital television because as each region goes digital, those households that don’t make the switch will be unable to watch any television.

Results from the Digital Tracker Survey show that 39 per cent of households that have already switched to digital television have a second television which has not gone digital.

Mr Harford says it is also important to remember that all televisions, video and DVD recorders will need to go digital if they are to continue receiving and recording programmes.

“If recording is important in your household you might want to consider a new personal video recorder such as MyFreeview or MySky,” said Mr Harford.

Digital take-up among households with a working TV used in the last six months by region:

Region                     take-up
------                     -------
West Coast                     92%
Northland                      85%
Wellington                     87%
Otago                          82%
Tasman/Nelson/Marlborough      83%
Waikato                        92%
Gisborne/Hawke's Bay           82%
Auckland                       82%
Taranaki                       85%
Southland                      85%
Bay of Plenty                  83%
Canterbury                     77%
Manawatu/Wanganui              77%

Please note the margin of error for the Digital Tracker Survey is two per cent.