What are the Benefits of Digital Television?

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The benefits of digital television are amazing and include:

Better picture quality: Digital technology allows the transmission of pictures with higher resolution for dramatically better picture and sound quality than currently available (HDTV). Most viewers will see improved clarity and color when watching their favorite news, sports or entertainment programming.

Widescreen: Digital TV is also broadcast in “widescreen”. This means that the picture is a third wider than the old analogue format.

Digital Audio: Just as a DVD will offer multiple soundtracks, you’ll find that many digital TV broadcasts let you listen in single-channel (mono), two-channel (stereo), or even surround-sound audio modes such as Dolby Digital 5.1. The latter, (DD 5.1 as it is called in industry shorthand) requires four speakers for surround sound effects, a center speaker for dialogue, and a sub-woofer for bass effects. There is provision for the mono audio track to be broadcast in multiple languages but that feature is not widely used at present.

Multicasting: DTV also allows the transmission of several TV programs at once – called “multicasting.” Multicasting Just as a DVD can contain several different programs on a single disc, so can a DTV broadcast contain several TV programs on the same channel. Multicasting allows the broadcaster to serve several different audiences at the same time. Or a cable system operator can use channel space more efficiently by carrying multiple digital cable programs on one channel.

Datacasting: The broadcaster sends out data separate from any TV programs. That data could be anything from prices and delivery information on a home shopping channel to interactive text and graphics on an educational channel.

Closed captioning: Additional data services, such as enhanced closed captioning are available with digital television.

Reception problems are solved: DTV solves reception problems like ghosting, which affects some analogue viewers in built-up or hilly areas, becomes a thing of the past for digital viewers because the digital signal is delivered more efficiently than the analogue transmissions.

Improved emergency communications: With the change from analog to digital, portions of the analog TV airwaves (known as the “spectrum”), will be made available to local emergency responders such as local firefighters, police and 9-1-1 responders. This means improved emergency communications capacity and safer communities.

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