Australia’s analog TV broadcasts will end quietly on the unceremonious date of 10 December 2013, as the last round of digital TV switchover dates have been announced.
In what Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy Senator Stephen Conroy called “the biggest technological change in broadcasting since colour TV was introduced in this country more than three decades ago,” final switchover dates for Australia’s capital cities and most densely-packed metropolitan areas were announced yesterday.
Adelaide will switch over on 2 April 2013, and Tasmania and Perth will follow on the 9th and 16th of that month. Brisbane, the Sunshine and Gold Coasts, and Darwin will turn off analog broadcasts at the end of May and July respectively.
Sydney (including Gosford) and Melbourne are the lucky last to switch over to digital-only TV. Sydney and its regions will see the analog era end on 3 December 2013, while long-time, bitter rival Melbourne will be the last to switch on 10 December.
After that date, no more analog television broadcasts will occur in Australia. Analog TV has been the main TV transmission method since the inception of black-and-white TV in 1956, with the last upheaval being the switch to colour TV in 1975.
Around 82 per cent of households around the nation already watch digital TV. The digital TV switchover has been taking place around Australia since 2010, with work already completed in central NSW and ACT, Southern Australia, northern Queensland, regional Victoria and other areas.