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SECTIONS / HOME CINEMA

Bye Bye Analogue, Hello Digital

By Oonagh Reidy | Wednesday | 04/12/2013

Sydneysiders rush to upgrade TV's, PVR's as digital switch became a reality, yesterday

As analog TV signals were permanently switched off in Sydney and surrounding areas yesterday, a total of 1.7 million switched over to digital-only TV broadcasts, Australia's largest switch, to date.  

Over 8.7 million households have now made the transition to digital TV, nationwide.

So, what are the options for switchover if you have left it until now to receive digital broadcasts?

 There are several: you can opt for a cheapie digital box for as little as $30, a more pricey PVR/ Blue Ray player which  records free to air channels, or buy a TV - all newer models have a digital tuner built in. 

Store manager for Betta Electrical, North Sydney told CN there has been a "rush " on set top boxes, PVR and TVs - mostly smaller screens -  in the past few days, as Sydneysiders scramble to digital ready. 

The store has sold double the usual levels of digital ready devices in the past 5-6 days, alone. 

Most people have upgraded their main TV but had not yet upgraded the second TV in the house.  

The store manager expects to be busy for the next few days and  "hopes it will continue", but anticipates demand will taper off, soon. 

Next week, 10 December, Melbourne and central eastern Australia, too will be switched off including areas of the Northern Territory outside of the Darwin switchover region.  This will complete digital TV switchover in OZ. 

Several retailers including Harvey Norman launched marketing campaign last month in anticipation of the mass Sydney switch over, as well as brands like Panasonic, Topfield who have pushed their PVR ranges which go up to $999. 

The Good Guys also ran a promo offering interest free on TV purchases over $1250 until 24 December, and ran offers on PVR's set top boxes and TV's . 

If you have not yet converted to digital-only TV, you can still get information about how to switch on this site or by calling the Digital Ready Information Line on 1800 20 10 13.

The Household Assistance Scheme and Satellite Subsidy Scheme will also remain open across the Sydney switchover region until 3 January 2014 to provide practical help to eligible households.

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