For many people it means switching over from basic TV services to freeview, but with plenty more choices available for TV, it's worth being clued up on just what digital means, and how the switchover is going to affect the way you watch television.
Digital TV offers a much more efficient way of watching television, although most of this 'efficiency' stuff actually happens on the tech level so you won't notice it from just turning on your television. What you will notice is that even the most basic digital service like freeview has a large number of channels available to choose from rather than the standard 5 that came with the analogue signal. This is because digital signals can be compressed - made smaller - which means more of them can be fit in the same amount of airspace. This extra space also means information can be transmitted much faster, which means additional services like EPGs (Electronic Program Guides) are also made possible by digital technology.
So, what are the benefits of digital television for the consumer? Well, first off, more channels equals more choice. This means that you've got a wider range of things to watch at all times, and it makes it easier to find reruns and repeats of your favourite shows, which means you don't always have to be around a specific time to make sure you catch an episode of a series you might be watching. It also means easier access to different types of entertainment; rather than having lots of variety channels like BBC 1 which offer different content, you can find dedicated comedy or dedicated film channels which makes browsing for something watch much easier.
Digital TV also offers a wider range of features overall, so you interact with programs such as quiz shows and shopping channels, access information through an on screen program guide which lets you know what each channel is broadcasting that day, and more. This level of interactivity also means digital TV offers much more choice for people with vision or hearing problems. Digital TV is also the only way you can pick up a HD signal, although currently there are no HD channels available on the basic Freeview service.
There are a number of different options available for digital television. You can go for a basic Freeview box for under ￡20 and never have to pay anything again, although many people are using the digital switchover as a reason to look into a more varied TV package. You can compare TV packages from all the big providers online, as well as taking a look at the advantages and disadvantages to use services like satellite and cable television. Digital is all about choice; if you want more, it's available to you and if you don't, then you can just grab a freeview box and never have to worry about it again.
Whether you want a brand new Sky HD box or you just want to see what your options are for the digital switchover, Digital Choices can answer your questions quickly and simply. If you're looking at switching to a new TV service but don't know the difference between a Sky plus box and a V plus service, Digital Choices is the website for you.