By the end of 2018, analogue broadcasting will be taken down in Singapore, which would mean that all TVs would need to be in the digital format. Digital transmissions allow broadcasters to send more signals more efficiently, enabling viewers to receive higher quality images and sound.
After a six-year campaign to get Singapore households to switch from analogue to digital broadcasting, up to 400,000 Housing Board homes yet to make the switch are set to come on board.
It will set a family back about $100 to install equipment to covert analogue signals to digital. The Government has earmarked $40 million to help equip homes to receive digital broadcasts ahead of the Dec 31 deadline. As such, the Infocomm Media Development Authority’s (IMDA) will start sending letters since April 2018 to the 400,000 HDB homes, informing them that they are entitled to free equipment worth $100. After this date, those who have not installed new digital TV equipment or subscribed to pay-TV services will no longer receive Mediacorp’s free-to-air channels.
Below are a few ways on how to ensure that your TV is digitalized.
- StarHub TV or Singtel TV Subscription
Households with TV sets connected to StarHub TV or Singtel TV service, need not do anything as they are already enjoying digital TV.
- Convert existing TV with a digital set-top box and an indoor antenna
Existing TV sets can still be used. Households with TV sets NOT connected to StarHub TV or Singtel TV service will need to buy a digital set-top box and an indoor UHF antenna. Just connect them to the existing TV set to watch digital TV channels.
To be sure, consumers should look out for a label issued by the Media Development Authority (MDA) that indicates whether the TV set, or set-top box, is compliant with Singapore’s digital format.
- Upgrade to TV with built-in DVB-T2 digital tuner and get an indoor antenna
Alternatively, households can consider buying TV sets with built-in DVB-T2 digital tuners (Integrated Digital TV or IDTV). Just connect the IDTV to an indoor UHF antenna to watch digital TV channels.