AS digital TV gains pace is the end for Rupert Murdoch’s Foxtel nigh?

25 000 more households in Victoria have just converted to digital TV through the Household Assistance Scheme, it was said today. 

According to analysts one of the biggest problems for Foxtel is the emergence of new HD TV Channels such as Go, Gem, 7TWO, 7Mate and ABC 1 and 3,  which has allowed free to air networks deliver new content streams similar to what pay TV Foxtel offer, at no cost to consumers.  

“The switchover to digital TV is a historic change to the way free-to-air TV is broadcast in Australia,” the Minister for Communications said today. 

“Regional Victoria will be switching to digital-only free-to-air television on 5 May and the government’s Household Assistance Scheme is helping ensure that all Victorians are ready for the switchover,” Communications Minister Senator Stephen Conroy said.  

“I am very happy to now be fully hooked up and to have made the switchover to digital television,” said one resident who has just had digital TV installed. .

The choice of programs and also the quality of sound and picture that comes with digital TV is wonderful and I particularly look forward to all the sport that the new digital channels will be showing,”

The Government is currently on a major drive to turn off analog and changeover to digital before the switch off takes place this year  to ensure “Australians did not miss out on the benefits of digital television,” they said. 

120 000 more households across Regional Victoria were eligible for free high-definition set top box and completes a full installation. 


These people can apply for assistance by calling Centrelink on 1800 55 64 43. 

Other regional areas including Mildura/Sunraysia, and more than 10 000 households in Regional South Australia and Broken Hill, have also had digital TV installed since January this year.

Fox TV, which Australia’s pay per view Foxtel service is a part of, yesterday announced record profits in the US, but once digital comes into full play, whether pay channels will continue to flourish remains to be seen.

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