What is digital television?

Digital television is a new way of broadcasting television. Although digital terrestrial television changes the way pictures are sent to your TV, it won’t change the way you watch television.

Since the beginning of television, we’ve been watching what is known as ‘analogue television’: TV signals are broadcast using radio waves, which are picked up by an aerial and sent down a wire to your TV, the analogue television receiver. Your set then changes the analogue signal into pictures and sound.

But things are finally changing - and for the better! With digital terrestrial television, the same transmitter will send the signal, but in a digital form. This signal will be picked up by your aerial and sent to your TV. But it will first have to pass through a digital receiver, a decoderDevice that converts digital signals into images that can be shown on your TV set. that’s plugged into your television. This will convert the signal into pictures and sound that are sharper and clearer.

Digital signals are really bits of computerised data (millions of zeroes and ones), so a lot of information can be sent at a time, much more than can be carried by the old analogue signals. This means many more channels carrying many more programmes can be broadcast. And, because digital signals don’t deteriorate, the quality is much better.

What you'll be happy to know is that although the change is dramatic, you don’t need to buy a fancy new TV set, a new aerial, or an expensive satellite. All you’ll need is the decoderDevice that converts digital signals into images that can be shown on your TV set.

While digital terrestrial television may mean changes in the way television is broadcast, it doesn’t really change how you watch it.

And the good news is that to switch on to digital terrestrial television, you don’t need to buy a new television or a satellite dish. All you need is a decoder, Device that converts digital signals into images that can be shown on your TV set.which is also known as an adapter or decoder. This device plugs into your TV and decodes the digital signal, transforming it into pictures and sound that can be displayed and heard on your television set. You do not need a special aerial (antenna) or television set. Depending on your reception, you may have to have your aerial adjusted by an expert.