The latest Digital Tracker survey results released by the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy indicate that 77% of Australian households have converted at least one television set to digital – an increase from 75 per cent recorded in the previous survey and from 61 per cent recorded in the same period a year ago.
The latest survey covers the period October to December 2010.
Outside of the two regions – Mildura and Regional South Australia/Broken Hill – that have switched off all analogue transmissions, the highest digital conversion rate was recorded in Tasmania and Darwin, where both markets reported an 88 per cent conversion rate.
The biggest increases came in Melbourne (increasing from 74 per cent in the last survey to 79 per cent) and Perth (increasing from 76 to 81 per cent) – while Sydney actually recorded a decrease from 68 per cent down to 66 per cent. Changes in survey samples are expected to see some fluctuation in results.
With the switch-off of analogue television in Regional South Australia and Broken Hill in December last year, more surveys were conducted within the local areas to determine conversion trends as the analogue switch-off date passed. The market had recorded a 94 per cent conversion rate following the analogue switch-off on 15 December, with 18 per cent of households making the switch between 2-12 weeks ahead of the analogue switch-off. On the last day of analogue broadcasting an estimated 1 to 2 per cent of households had made last-minute conversion to digital.
The next region to lose analogue transmission – Regional Victoria – recorded an increase in digital conversion from 79 to 81 per cent. Analogue transmissions will be switched off across the state in May, although some small towns have already cut over to digital-only transmission.
The shutdown of all analogue transmission is scheduled to be completed across the whole of Australia by December 2013.
Source: Digital Ready