Digital Television


Digital TV is a technology seeking for a problem. It is being pushed by some businesses, and being mostly rejected by consumers. If left to the free market as it should be, digital television would die. The public is understandably showing little interest in spending hundreds of billions of dollars on expensive digital TVs to replace a working and very cheap analog TV system.

In the USA it appears the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is planning to force a change on the public, despite being supposed to represent the public interest. there are suggestions Congress will legislate the removal of analog TV before 2010. In Britain the digital deadline is 2012.

In Australia analog TV will also be banned by 2008. This is despite very little interest being shown by consumers in buying the equipment, or by broadcasters in transmitting high definition signals. In May 2005, Communications Minister Senator Helen Coonan hinted that full introduction of digital TV might be delayed until the mid 2010's, after concerns only half of Australians might have digital TV sets or set top boxes by 2008. Despite some limited digital programs appearing in 2001, by 2005 only a half million people out of Australia's 8 million families had digital access.

One reason for the lack of interest may be that most viewers don't notice the difference between a 625 line display and a 1000 line display when the distance to the display is more than six times the height of the display.

If the consumer electronics industry wants to sell doigital TV, let them compete with much cheaper analog TVs. There should be absolutely no reason for government intervention.

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