Read our guide to digital TV to help you make the right decision.
Long gone are the days when the family would crowd around a single TV set and bicker about which of the four (or five) channels to watch.
Comparing digital TV options with Gocompare.com will let you see results relevant to you
Analogue TV – phased out in 2012 – is old news and, like so many other things, the future is digital.
This means a better quality picture, a huge range of channels, parental controls, interactive menus and the power to watch what you want, when you want.
Digital TV can be a confusing affair – there are numerous providers, ways to watch and equipment set-ups available – but getting your perfect package needn’t be time-consuming or costly.
Almost all TVs can be converted to digital with a digital box (even black and white ones), and a decent analogue aerial will still work well, so going digital doesn’t require a load of new gear.
Digital boxes can be purchased with a one-off payment, or will be supplied by your channel provider (see below).
However, if you choose to buy some new equipment you might consider a specially designed digital TV, or a high definition (HD) TV for crystal-clear viewing.
The important thing is that the equipment carries the ‘digital tick’ logo, which means it’s got digital compatibility.
The channels you’re able to view depend on the way you watch digital TV. There are two main options:
The nature of digital TV means that there will be occasions when you’ll have to re-tune your box
In this instance, you purchase a digital box and are able to watch free digital channels, which include the channels previously available on analogue (BBC channels, ITV, Channel 4, etc), plus a range of other channels.
This is typically known as Freeview, but there are other providers available. There are no contracts involved, and no further costs.
Here, you subscribe to a channel package through a provider such as Sky, Virgin Media or BTVision. You choose what channels you want (from a huge range of entertainment, music, film, education and documentary options) and pay on a monthly basis.
One of the benefits of opting for a monthly package is that your provider will supply you with the necessary digital box, and can offer you low-cost (or sometimes free) upgrades to digital-recording boxes, which offer extra benefits like pausing and rewinding live TV and recording your favourite shows.
Gocompare.com has partnered with Digital Choice* – its preferred digital TV comparison service – to help you find the perfect TV package.
Whether you’re a reality show addict, documentary lover or can’t get enough of American sitcoms, we’ll find the right package for you based on your location, equipment and budget.