Welcome to the Digital Television Website

Digital satellite service

Digital satellite services were started by Sky Digital in October 1998; digital terrestrial television services were launched by ONdigital in November 1998; and some cable operators began to roll out their digital services in July 2003

We has ensured that viewers will still be able to get the existing five free-to-air channels digitally and we hope that when the analogue transmissions are switched off, everyone who has a telephone and a television set will have access to the Internet.

We are working to help ensure the success of digital television whether through an aerial or via cable or satellite in order to increase the number and variety of services available to consumers and to play a key role in the information age. We has announced that the present analogue television services which viewers access through their aerial will be fully switched to digital when virtually all viewers can receive these services and that the cost of switching to digital services is within the reach of all consumers. This will depend on two key tests being met: availability of digital services and affordability of equipment.

The target timetable for meeting the tests is 2006-2012. The then Secretary of State set out his policy in a speech in October 2003. Setting a timetable will encourage broadcasters to invest in new digital services including new interactive services and consumers to take-up these services.

Personalise your viewing and listening schedule by having Sky+ installed - use it to record 2 channels simultaneously whilst watching either of them or a recording, pause live TV, auto-record any TV/radio series on any channel, watch/record a programme from the beginning up to an hour after it was scheduled to start, or watch movies with Dolby Digital 5.1 sound!

Every two years the Department will review progress. A Viewers' Panel, made up of viewers from all over the UK, was established to provide independent advice to We on digital issues which most matter to the public. A copy of the Panel's Report (PDF 185kb) is available on line.

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In addition to providing digital systems to homes in the area, Satellite Place engineers also install satellite systems into schools, universities, offices and retail premises. This further strengthens the reputation of the company as a provider of quality service.

For the Report, DCMS commissioned research into consumers' attitudes towards digital television, on behalf of the Viewers' Panel. The Digital Television 2010 survey (PDF 121kb), carried out by MORI is available online.

DCMS receives a large amount of correspondence about all aspects of digital television and has put together a list of the most frequently asked questions along with answers. There are also suggested contact details for consumers who wish to find out further information

2 - Understanding the Differences between Analogue and Digital

3 - Understanding Compression

4 - Understanding Convergence

5 - Understanding Conditional Access

6 - Understanding the Electronic Programme Guide (EPG)

7 - Understanding Delivery Platforms: DTT, D-SAT, Cable and MVDS

8 - Understanding the Internet on television

9 - Understanding Consumer Control

10 - Understanding Interactivity

11 - Understanding the Implications of Widescreen

12 - Understanding the Viewer of the Future

13 - Understanding the Digital Economy

14 - Understanding the Practical Implications of Web Convergence and Understanding the Practical Implications of Open TV