In 2021, a significant part of the Czech TV viewers will be affected by a significant technological change in television broadcasting, i.e. the transition to a new generation of digital broadcasting known as the DVB-T2. Therefore, we bring you the answers to the basic questions often asked by the TV viewers.
WHAT IS DVB-T2?
DVB-T2 is the next generation of the earth (terrestrial) digital broadcasts, a modern successor to the current terrestrial digital television broadcasting DVB-T. The terrestrial digital television broadcasting is the only freeway of the free-access to television broadcasting in the Czech Republic. This, however, does not apply to a television broadcast received by satellite or cable operators.
WHAT THIS CHANGE DOES TECHNICALLY REPRESENT?
The new standard allows to accommodate more television programs in high definition televisions (HDTV) into one broadcast network and achieve nationwide coverage with lesser number of frequencies when compared to the present state. The usable bandwidth for video transmission quality thereby increases, the quality of sound and picture is enhanced, and there is a general cost reduction for broadcast. It might result in increasing number of home television stations.
WHEN WILL THE CHANGE OCCUR?
On 1 February 2021. After this date, it will be possible to tune terrestrial television broadcast only in the new standard when using the classical antenna. All European countries will undergo the same process as we, nevertheless for example Germany will switch completely to DVB-T2 in 2019.
WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE SO THAT MY TELEVISION WORKS EVEN AFTER 2020?
The change applies only to those who receive TV broadcasts terrestrially. It consequently does not concern households with cable or satellite TV broadcasting.
If you do not want to get rid of your TV, all you need is to buy a set-top box with DVB-T2. In the same way, many viewers tackle the transition from analogue to digital television broadcasting. The advantage of this solution is cost efficiency, because the set-top box costs several hundred crowns and the price of the cheapest types should start at about 500 crowns.
The easiest way is to purchase a new TV with an integrated DVB-T2. These devices are in stores clearly marked with the logo of DVB-T2.
A list of certified devices for DVB-T2 can also be found here.
SHOULD WE CONCERN OF A CHANGE OF STANDARD?
Certainly not. The change of the TV broadcasting way will not happen does from day to day. The transition networks that will run parallel to the current standard (DVB-T format as the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting) will soon begin to broadcast in the new DVB-T2 standard. Viewers who are satisfied with the current broadcast, can use it until 2020, and tackle the transition to new technology just before switching off. Doubling television broadcasting represents a particular way on how to prepare average viewers for a new change, and give them plenty time enough to get used to it and choose the optimal solution.
The simultaneous broadcasting in both standards is scheduled for 1 February 2021. Then it will be no longer possible to receive TV broadcasts in the “old” standard and the relevant network will be switched off.
So you have more than 4 years to prepare for change.
WHY THE DVB-T2 IS NEEDED?
Owing to the decision at the international level, the frequencies being used in the current DVB-T standard will ceases to be used for television broadcasts, and will be newly available for mobile data services. This is a procedure that is fully in line with the EU harmonization objectives and conclusions of the World Radiocommunication Conference in 2015.
Despite change of the standard of television broadcasting is not directly at the behest of Czech institutions, there is certainly a need to undergo it in order to maintain a sufficiently good quality reception. The Ministry of Industry and Trade aims to ensure that this change is the simplest and costly least for the viewers.
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