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Tuesday, 9 April, 2002, 09:42 GMT 10:42 UK
What now for the future of digital TV?
ITV Digital was put into administration on Wednesday because it could not afford to pay the 180m remaining on its contract with the Football League.

In the past few weeks, ITV Digital is thought to have been losing up to 1m a day.

Granada and Carlton have already pumped 800m into the venture, seen as a flagship for digital television when launched as OnDigital in 1998.

And cable television has troubles of its own, with NTL - the UK's biggest cable company - admitting it too may run out of money.

The government has insisted the decision to place ITV Digital into administration "is not the end of digital terrestrial television in the UK".

It is still saying it plans to switch off analogue television by 2010.

Do you think that digital television still has a future in the media market? Or is it, like the dot.com industry, just another bubble set to burst? What do you as a consumer think about digital TV? Is it worth the hype?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.


Your reaction


Iif you offered me good reporting, science, technology, current affairs, politics-made-relevant, and similar fare, via any kind of connection, I would sign up without delay

Glyn Roughsedge, UK
Frankly, I couldn't give a knitted monkey's about any kind of sport, but if you offered me good reporting, science, technology, current affairs, politics-made-relevant, and similar fare, via any kind of connection, I would sign up without delay.
Glyn Roughsedge, UK

For the company? Digital meltdown. For the executives? Massive bonuses. For the employees? Massive unemployment.
Frank, England

I just want to point out the management behind ITV and ITV Digital is different despite the name similarity.
Ja, UK

We have been all the way up to the most expensive package NTL has to offer - and back down to its most basic pack. The films stay around forever, Front Row is a complete rip off - sometimes the films we have paid for appear within a week on a non pay-for channel and BBC 4 invariably screens repeats or repeats what has already been shown on terrestrial. If it gets no better we'll simply switch off television when the government switches off analogue - and save ourselves the license fee.
Kim Hatton, England UK

The only benefit to digital TV is that you can pick up the radio through the box. Digital TV in the UK basically means that both the good programmes are spread out among countless channels, with the gaps between them filled with unimaginative padding. At least radio gives the brain something to do, now that TV in the UK has become completely vacuous.
Pete Hazell, UK

Within 50 miles from London are millions of voters where the DTTV signal is officially unusable, although analogue TV signals from Crystal Palace are good. The mobile phone industry fitted thousands of low power transmitters to get national coverage, ITV Digital should have done the same. They spent the money unwisely.
Tony, UK

Although I feel for the football league and the threat of job losses if ITV Digital closes, I wonder has any one considered the implications for the staff employed by ITV Digital? The smaller firms whose contracted businesses are inextricably linked to the company. Endless speculation and assumptions, imminent unemployment, loss of revenue and low moral.
Anonymous, UK


I think that football has gone too far in this country

John Carey, UK
I think that football has gone too far in this country. Do we really need to pay players all this money just to kick a ball around a pitch every now and again? I would rather that football was not shown on television, and the cost of going to football matches was also cut, then this would make more fans go to matches, and make sure that the players are not becoming too hungry for the money.
John Carey, UK

I have seen both SKY and Digital television services. Of the digital channels, E4 was the only channel that I watched. BBC Choice, BBC4 and ITV2 were very poor. Of the SKY channels - they were far better in quality across the board. SKY television has more channels and is of better quality.
Robert , UK

I like digital TV - it would seem that most of the best programmes these days are to be found in the extra educational channels that can be found there. I do, however, think it is about time that "professional" sports were stopped, and that it was well past time that the soccer bubble was burst.
Branwen, UK

The digital problem is partly one of government mis-management. I used to live in Camberley, a town bang in the M3 corridor, yet we were told that terrestrial digital was not transmitted here, and that there were no plans to ever provide it. If it's like this in Surrey, what must it be like in Devon!!
Jon, UK


Why the media seem to think the demise of ITV is the end for DTT I don't know

Toby Hocking, UK
DTT has nothing to do with ITV Digital - ITV were simply trying to make more money through the use of subscription channels. All everyone needs is a cheap small box (now available) which just gives them all the free channels but using a digital signal - why the media seem to think the demise of ITV is the end for DTT I don't know.
Toby Hocking, UK

All the Digital TV Service providers need to seriously consider their position in charging extortionate subscriptions for what amounts to only ONE extra channel on the TV receiver. Until digital decoders are incorporated in all TV sets and video/DVD recorders, enabling access to the 'free' services for all viewers, the requirement for the current analogue service will remain despite any government efforts to 'kill' it.
Chris Hind, Kent, England

I have been with ON/ITV Digital almost from the start and think it is great, ok there were picture quality problems at first but this was fixed with an aerial upgrade and an aerial booster. They have failed because they should have spent their cash on more channels.
Adam, UK

As more and more channels, containing more and more dirge become available I'm finding that the best quality programs are actually to be found on the radio. Perhaps society will go full circle and return to an evening's listening rather than viewing!
Ron, UK

I like digital TV - it would seem that most of the best programmes these days are to be found in the extra educational channels that can be found there. I do, however, think it is about time that "professional" sports were stopped, and that it was well past time that the soccer bubble was burst.
Branwen, UK


ITV digital offered the money to football at a vastly inflated price so it's not a surprise that the deal was agreed upon

Tim, England
The amount footballers get paid is obscene, and in the long run this problem may be a good thing for football, to re-evaluate the direction that it is presently going. However, ITV digital offered the money to football at a vastly inflated price so it's not a surprise that the deal was agreed upon. If someone were to offer you three times the value of your home you would take it very quickly. It's the same principle and yes it is greed. But ultimately, its the fault of ITV digital, so on their heads be it. If they can't pay then Granada and Carlton should, even if it means these two media giants are also financially crippled. There has got to be some responsibility taken by the parent companies rather than the shirking that they are doing at the moment. If ITV digital couldn't afford it then they shouldn't have offered it. If the companies fail to pay up there should be a nationwide boycott of ITV.
Tim, England

The digital problem is partly one of government mismanagement. I used to live in Camberley, a town bang in the M3 corridor, yet we were told that terrestrial digital was not transmitted here, and that there were no plans to ever provide it. If it's like this in Surrey, what must it be like in Devon!!
Jon, UK

DTT has nothing to do with ITV Digital - ITV were simply trying to make more money through the use of subscription channels. All everyone needs is a cheap small box (now available) which just gives them all the free channels but using a digital signal - why the media seem to think the demise of itv is the end for DTT i don't know.
Toby Hocking, UK

All the Digital TV Service providers need to seriously consider their position in charging extortionate subscriptions for what amounts to only ONE extra channel on the TV receiver. Until digital decoders are incorporated in all TV sets and video/DVD recorders, enabling access to the 'free' services for all viewers, the requirement for the current analogue service will remain despite any government efforts to 'kill' it.
Chris Hind, Kent, England

And whilst we're getting all upset about digital TV, in the US they're phasing in high definition television with surround sound. By the time it gets to analogue switch off there's going to be another round of TV upgrades for HDTV.
Nige, UK


Do you remember a few years ago when BSB was a rival to Sky, they soon foundered and were gobbled up by their rival?

Vicki, England
Do you remember a few years ago when BSB was a rival to Sky, they soon foundered and were gobbled up by their rival? In my last house I had NTL cable. I soon realised that all we were watching was the terrestrial channels and UK Gold - BBC repeats! So it was no hardship to give it up when we moved. I am quite happy to wait for my present telly to conk out and then I will buy a digital one. The prices will come down in a couple of years. No way will I get Sky and put more money into Rupert Murdoch's pocket.
Vicki, England

The quality of the widescreen digital picture is excellent and will surely replace analogue over time in my view. I thoroughly enjoy the extra BBC channels. ITV Digital's problems are simply that the programme quality is not up that of the free channels, and yet people are expected to pay extra for it. I probably would pay for some extra commercial free channels, and I do watch advertising funded channels (although I'm not sure I would pay for them). But sorry, I'm not paying extra for endless repeats of commercial riddled programmes, many of which are anyway still broadcast on the free channels.
Ian G., UK

The bottom line in all of this is that no matter if you have ITV Digital or Sky. The fact is Digital TV is expensive and rubbish. Everyone thought that more choice = better TV, yet 9 times out of 10 all we get for our money is more repeats, you can only watch some shows only once or twice and that's it.
Lee Marks, England


Digital replaced analogue in the phone market - it will in the TV arena. It just needs the right guidance, not the greed

MS, UK
Far from it... Digital TV is a transmission standard not a business. NTL and ITV are companies delivering this service. If they hadn't been so greedy and self-righteous they wouldn't be in this mess now. Digital replaced analogue in the phone market - it will in the TV arena. It just needs the right guidance, not the greed.
MS, UK

It is no surprise that the football deal fell in on itself when it did. Why? Because of one name. ITV! Let's face it, ITV just cannot do sport. After this Football League fiasco, how can it attract other sporting contracts? Also, I think it is time that Formula One's Bernie Ecclestone and the people behind the Rugby World Cup finally sat up and ripped up their respective contracts with the station. Surely they must now know that viewers are not interested in watching advert shows with sport interrupted in between!
John Jones, England

I think D-TV is the way forward but ITV digital are not the only people to supply it. Sky Digital if far better, a wider channel range and far less signal problems. The people I feel sorry for are the employees of ITV digital. Everyone keeps moaning on about all the football clubs that will be in trouble as a result of it. So what! there all paid to much anyway. These people have no Jobs and still have bills to pay. as for everyone else get a sky or cable. simple!
Craig Chapman, UK

The take up of digital TV - whether it is ITV digital, Sky or Cable - is poor because 50% of the population don't want it or wont pay for it. Why should people be forced to buy a set top box or take out a contract with a private company to receive the free to air channels which are already covered by the annual licence fee? It will cost most families hundreds of pounds to convert all their TVs as after all most homes have several TVs. And what about those who rely on indoor aerials - can a TV with an indoor aerial receive digital signals? As for the chances of a 95% take up of digital in the next 8 years, well don't make me laugh! It could only happen if firstly everywhere in the country could get a digital signal and secondly if the Government gave digital boxes free of charge to everyone (and additional boxes where homes had more than one TV). I don't see this happening in the next 8 years, do you?
John Bridgman, England

Mark Smith (UK) - The "con" you speak of is not digital TV. The con is the license fee that is paid, all of which goes to support the BBC, and which you have to pay, even if you don't watch BBC! At least the fee paid for digital TV is only paid if you choose to watch it! The best thing for TV in this country would be to scrap the license fee, and the "advert-free" BBC along with it.
Simon Moore, UK


Why should we pay astronomical prices for television we've seen before?

Mark Smith, UK
Digital TV is all a con. We pay 110 for BBC1 & BBC2. The others, ITV, C4 & C5 support themselves by advertising! Why should we pay astronomical prices for television, like UK Gold (nicknamed UK Bill) we've seen before? The basic package gives you nothing worth having, the package that includes Sky 1 (one of the better channels) still gives you nothing worth the money you pay. You then add movie channels and sport and your paying over 400 a year for channels that have more advertising than terrestrial TV. I have never seen so many repeats in all my life as I've seen on "Digital". We are being conned and somewhere someone is getting paid a lot of money, and still sending their companies into bankruptcy.
Mark Smith, UK

Having been a subscriber to both ITV and Sky, I found the ITV service far superior. Sky is more expensive, carries far too many channels and never worked properly from day one. Unfortunately I moved to a area where you can't get ITV digital and so I have become a statistic that appears to prefer Sky. I would revert to ITV the very day it was available in our area (South Glos.)
Piers Todd, England

The world was in many ways a better, simpler, happier, less obese place before television altogether. If Britain was really smart, it would go back to the days of radio when people used their imaginations while listening, read more books, and the art of conversations was still very much alive.
Mark, USA

I too have experienced the US multi-channel TV nightmare. Lots of quantity with zero quality. Digital TV is simply a tax on sports fans to further supplement the obscene "wages" of players and managers and as such, deserves to sink without trace.
Graham Gordon, UK

I have been with ON/ITV Digital almost from the start and think it is great, ok there were picture quality problems at first but this was fixed with an aerial upgrade and an aerial booster. They have failed because they should have spent their cash on more channels.
Adam, UK

Digital TV has great potential as a high quality broadcast medium but I fear that the technical quality will suffer as more and more channels are compressed into available bandwidth. As for the content - where are all these programs going to come from? There is nowhere near enough decent material to fill my five analogue channels.
Kulu, UK

It's not so much that digital is a failure. I think over-hyped football and overpaid football players has been a large contribution to this. Days are fewer where the public are told what's good for them, we can make our own judgments on quality. I myself have turned on the radio a lot more in the last few years and the internet is more fun too. Analogue will not be switched off in 2010 - my prediction
Leah Harlow, United Kingdom

I don't think that the public realise just how much these footballers get paid. Imagine getting paid 5,000 per week for kicking a bit of leather about. As a student I'd be grateful if I get paid 500 per week when I graduate, very grateful. Don't get me wrong Im a huge football fan, but when someone is getting paid 80,000 a week and a Junior Doctor educated to the highest standards and with huge responsibilities only gets paid a quarter of this in a year? It's an absolute farce, and shows how ridiculous our society has become.
Mustafa Yilmaz, England

I don't have an aerial on my house and so it is cheaper to have cable TV than get a new one put up. After years of dodgy analogue reception, I like the crisp and clear picture on cable and would never go back.
David Heald, UK

This just proves how overvalued the "sport" of football is and how greedy football players are! Let them go under, then at least they can't rip off parents by changing their kit numerous times a year. Oh sorry - the big clubs won't worry because they have plenty of money. Hey wait a minute, couldn't the big clubs help the smaller ones or is the good of the sport beyond the greed of the few?
Rog, England

Digital TV will be back as there is always a place for better technology at home and in the workplace. But the company that introduces it must have better management skills than ITV, and a clearer picture of where the revenue will come from. They must forget about milking the football fans, we've already been bled dry by the clubs.
Baz

Even if ITV Digital and NTL are running into problems, Sky and Telewest also run digital TV services. Besides, Digital TV is backed by strong technology which is proven to be better than older technology. These facts alone should secure it's eventual success.
David, UK


No wonder they have a 25% attrition rate, it does not work!

John, UK
I took the 12 month pre-paid package with On Digital. It did not work, reception was poor, the picture kept pixelising. We had an aerial upgrade which made a small difference, but it still not work. Then there was a "software change" and we could no longer access anything but the free channels despite being sent a new box, various smart cards and call centre staff resetting for us. In the end we cut our losses 8 months into the 12 month contract, went to Sky (which works!). No wonder they have a 25% attrition rate, it does not work!
John, UK

I blame the monkey.
Tim Jacks, UK

What puzzles me is, with even many of the Premiership matches being profoundly boring, how anyone could have thought that obscure games from the lower divisions would ever attract the interest of any but a few besotted fans. It was this monumental miscalculation that is now coming home to roost.
Tom, GB

I receive ITV digital and find the service to be great, I always received outstanding customer service whether at 9am or 11pm. The only reason most people have a problem with the service is due to the ancient aerials that plague the landscape, that need upgrading. This is why Sky's signal is so good because you have to install a dish to receive - hence an installer has to come out. Although this system is plagued by bad weather (more than the analogue counterpart ever was) the digital signal for DTT is MORE robust than the sky signal, and with that in mind sky have turned off the analogue broadcast service.
Nick.K, UK

Is it any wonder that ITV digital failed! The technology simply does not work reliably. I have been in the digital TV industry since the beginning & every customer who took up what was On Digital moved over to Sky digital within a matter of months !
Mark Riley, UK


I suggest we reserve the whole of the DTT spectrum for free-to-air services from the current five broadcasters

Dick C, UK
I hope this will mean the BBC will get more terrestrial bandwidth and we will soon be able to get BBC programmes as good as on satellite. Mainly, I'm thinking of interactive sports (football, golf and tennis) but I'm sure others (walking with...) would benefit. After all, we pay as much license tax as satellite viewers. I suggest we reserve the whole of the DTT spectrum for free-to-air services from the current five broadcasters (and Teletext) and leave pay TV to satellite and cable who have enough bandwidth and users.
Dick C, UK

The success of digital TV will not be found in the success of Pay-TV companies but in the take-up of 'Free to Air' digital services. This is the audience which will otherwise continue to depend upon analogue transmissions making analogue switch off impossible. ITV Digital is not all that is digital terrestrial but simply the Pay-TV venture that tried to make a profit out of it.

DTT has to succeed. Neither satellite nor cable will ever reach the same portion of the population that analogue terrestrial transmissions currently reach. As digital receivers come down in price they become accessible to those who are not in the 'premium' market of Pay-TV. The government should allow more multiplexes for the 'Free to Air' broadcasters if DTT is ever to be attractive enough to replace analogue.
Andrew Witham, UK

As an ITV digital customer I am very sorry about what is happening to them. However lets not get carried away millions of people have SKY and there is still another 8 years for people to switch over. The problem is why did the business analysts value first division football matches at 5m each. As a Watford supporter I have considered charging to watch the games not the other way around. If people in business are stupid and carried away by hysteria they will generally lose everything in the end. Digital will remain on course.
Jeremy stone, UK

Lets hope ITV Digital manages to stay, and if necessary lose the ITV Sport Channel, which is the channel that has caused them to go into administration. For people living in flats, ITV Digital was a marvellous invention, some people are not allowed a Sky Dish!!
Paul Alexander, UK


The trouble with OnDigital is that it offers nothing new to the public.

A Walker, England
The trouble with OnDigital is that it offers nothing new to the public. If it supplied, for example, high definition, true cinema style widescreen, full cinema Dolby THX sound and high speed internet access via your TV, then there would at least be an incentive to change. As it is, all that is on offer is exactly the same as you can get on analog for free plus two or three channels of repeats. The bottom line is what is the point in changing? To be honest, the picture is no better than a well tuned analog signal and the content, well, the less said about that the better.
A Walker, England

Yes this is probably a disater in the making for football but what about the paying customers, some of whom have paid in advance or taken on the ITV digital as a cheaper option than SKY. Ok perhaps not that expensive but not in everyones budget. If ITV Digital can't be saved how about some kind of offer to its customers from SKY or BBC?
Audrey, England

Digital TV - a case of the Emperor's new clothes? It would seem some poeple would prefer 20 channels of trash rather than 4 of quality as long as they are "Digital". Not all that is digital is good. We in the UK are being given a technically sub-standard digital TV broadcast system with more & more channels being pushed into a small bandwidth. The BBC is the worst culprit - charging many people (via the license fee) for extra channels they can't get and then reducing the size of most people's picture with its craze for widescreen. People are being forced into an inferior digital widescreen future by the BBC and a Government driven not by quality but by their desire to sell off the analogue bandwidth a.s.a.p. Our TV picture & program quality used to be much envied by the Americans. Not for much longer.
Gareth Lloyd, UK

You guys should look on the bright side - here in the States we have hundreds of channelswith nothing worth watching. The authorities cannot even make up their mind as to what shape the TV should be. We have NTSC 4:3, Digital 4:3, Digital 16:9, High Definition 4:3 and HD 16:9. Most of which is digitally compressed or otherwise manipulated so that the quality is no better than it was 20 years ago. The best part is that when you have so many channels to read about in the TV Times, the program is over by the time you have made your choice!
Derrick Billin, USA

It seems my reluctance to join the digital bandwagon is justified. A package of second-rate programmes used to fill out an operation to divert funds to football. A plague on both their houses.
John, UK


We don't need it. Frankly, we don't need broadcast TV; except for the news and live events

PJ, UK
We don't need it. Frankly, we don't need broadcast TV; except for the news and live events. Everything else could be supplied on video (or DVD or over the internet). But that brings me to another two questions. Why won't the BBC re-release all the deleted Dr. Who videos? Why are videos so expensive, when they could be produced for about 2 or 3 and still make a healthy profit?
PJ, UK

The trouble lies with Football and Football players. Their greed and lack of common sense by having "one" supplier of TV revenue, has come back to bite them with a vengeance. Poor old Football, now you will have to live in the "real" world. Let this be a lesson to you that you don't forget.
Paul R, UK

It has been obvious from the outset that the UK digital TV system is fatally flawed. It uses an extremely small UHF frequency band and is already seen to be inferior technically to satellite systems which can utilise higher bandwidth, resulting in significantly better picture quality. Added to this is the high cost of having to provide hilltop sites for every house, in every valley in the UK....exactly the same problem that has plagued analogue UHF TV. The government should have promoted an alternative satellite system to provide competition. This would have been far cheaper and would not have entailed duplication of se-top boxes by the user.
Keith Huggett, UK


The ITV box is only used when there is a first division football match on

Susie Witterick, UK
I subscribe both to Sky and to ITV digital. The ITV box is only used when there is a first division football match on. Otherwise, it's Sky all the way in this house - more channels, better choice, better signal...no contest. As far as I'm concerned, the sooner ITV closes down and I can save a little money by having just the one subscription, the better. I do feel that the government is being premature in trying to make us all digital though - my mother lives in a remote area of Cornwall where neither ITV digital nor Sky are received. What is she meant to do if the analogue signal is turned off?
Susie Witterick, UK

I think a 110 licence fee per year is quite enough to pay for television. I just don't understand people who want to pay more. They should go out and get themselves a life.
Andrew Hutchinson, United Kingdom

ITV Digital should never have let the monkey run the company! Digital TV is the future!
Adi Heesom, London, UK

I think that we should look to the States for the solution to spiralling footballers wages and match attendance. The American Football NFL introduced a league-wide salary cap for the clubs, whereby all wage commitments year on year have to fall within a league dictated dollar amount. This means that not only do the clubs not face unexpected salary commitments, but no matter how rich a club is they cannot just go out and buy all the best players available, so the teams are more competitive. In addition to this, they have TV blackouts, where unless all of the match tickets are sold, the game is not shown on TV at all. This guarantees the clubs money from ticket sales. Although this may not be feasible for lower league clubs, it could certainly be implemented for premier league games. After all, it is just a game.
Matt Linin, England


The public have taken to digital with very little effort from the government

Stephen Page, UK
The public have taken to digital with very little effort from the government. Almost 50% of homes now have access to digital TV. However, the government do need to start broadcasting the fact that they plan to turn the analogue signals off soon. Maybe then manufacturers will put in the decoders as standard on all new sets. Also those that aren't attracted to the benefits will be aware they need to change over maybe when they next replace their TV. There needs to be education about the proposals.
Stephen Page, UK

Digital TV is the latest technology that does not work. The reason why ITV Digital has lost subscribers is failure of good reception.
Roy Page, UK

Having lived in the US for a while, where I had access to 90+ channels, and then watched the progressive dumbing down of UK Television, it seems clear to me that there is an inverse relationship between the number of channels and the quality of output. Why should I have to pay for digital TV equipment when all I'm going to get out of it is a worse service?
Ewan Slater, England


Analogue services should continue until the public no longer requires them, not at the government's whim

Brian W, UK
With several analogue TVs in the house, ranging from new to fifteen years old, I resent potentially having to pay out for a decoder for each set or buy new. Analogue services should continue until the public no longer requires them, not at the government's whim. This could be determined by a separate licence fee: when no analogue licences are being sold, switch it off.
Brian W, UK

I have had ITV Digital for the past few years. The one advantage it had over Sky was the ability to move the set top box if you moved house (I rented so moved a lot). Digital TV definitely has a bright future - choice is never a bad thing - which is why it is a shame that ITV Digital has gone bust.
John B, UK

Let's face it, ITV digital brought on their own demise. Their service was rubbish, they treated their audience as though they're simpletons, many people still can't get the service at all, including people in cities. On top of all this they made a bid for the football that was so obviously flawed. They do not deserve a place in today's business world. Good riddance!
Jonathan Kelk, UK

Maybe now this country will wake up and realise that the footballers are not worth what they are being paid and the fact that clubs might go out of business due to this is nonsense. Pay the players less, most of them are not worth the shirt they wear anyway
Dave, Wales

The failure in this instance is not of Digital TV technology, but of common business sense. Like the dotcom industry the sensible business with sensible plans will succeed and prevail, and the money-for-nothing companies will falter. What is needed is to find a sensible way to make use of the technology that is available. There is scope for these and they should be pursued.
Jonathan, UK

Digital TV - too many channels & too little time to watch them all. Everybody jumped on to the digital bandwagon, but the dead wood needs to be removed in order to make digital TV work.
David LJ, Isle of Man UK


From my experience with ITV-Digital the service is over hyped and unreliable

Mark E, England
As someone who has used both Sky Digital and ON/ITV-Digital I have had two very different views of digital TV. From my experience with ITV-Digital the service is over hyped and unreliable (I regularly lost a signal in the middle of a programme). However, my experience with Sky has been a joy, I now can watch channels that ITV digital did not have plus all my old channels with no signal problems. I have the option to see the latest films virtually when I want, and loads of interactive features that I haven't had chance to play with fully yet! It seems the only thing that ITV digital has that Sky doesn't is the free monkey. Perhaps they should try selling the monkey to people who don't want to sign up to the service!
Mark E, England

I am an ITV Digital customer, the only reason I kept it was for the champions' league matches as the quality of the viewing was appalling. If they do go bust I'll have to think long & hard about taking the service again before I do. Looking at the situation at present, ITV Digital is in administration, NTL are having financial problems so that only leaves sky, this shows there is a serious lack of competition, Mr. Murdoch must be rubbing his hands with glee!
Jason, Manchester, England

When is the government going to realise that people don't want digital television? The integral sets are far too expensive and it is unreasonable to plan to switch off analogue transmitters when analogue only sets are still being sold. If they really want to phase analogue out, then they should first ban the sale of analogue only sets.
Pete B, UK


People do want Digital TV. Half the population of Britain have it

M Maguire, UK
Not true, Pete B. People do want Digital TV. Half the population of Britain have it. And there's still plenty of time before the Government switches off analogue. Digital transmission is inevitability - it's the future. Just because one company has gone bust doesn't mean it's a doomed industry. Personally I'll be glad when TV is totally interactive and I can choose at will what I watch when I want to watch it, rather than being fed the drivel the TV stations are putting out now. TV has got so bad over the last few years I stopped watching completely about 6 months ago.
M Maguire, UK

Sorry Pete, that's a very narrow-minded view. Digital TV is here to stay, and the only reason that the take-up hasn't been so great is the poor way it's been pushed. Market forces will dictate that prices will come down, and one of the best ways of encouraging take-up will be the introduction of the cheap boxes from Pace, and others, which will convert any TV into a digital one. I agree though that stopping the sale of analogue sets will stimulate the uptake.
Dave Parker, UK

When is the government going to realise that people don't want digital television? The integral sets are far too expensive and it is unreasonable to plan to switch off analogue transmitters when analogue only sets are still being sold. If they really want to phase analogue out, then they should first ban the sale of analogue only sets.
Pete B, UK

See also:

27 Mar 02 | Business
ITV Digital goes broke
27 Mar 02 | Business
NTL warns of cash crisis
Internet links:


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