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Published on December 22nd, 2016 | by The GC Team


End of the road for SD TVs as Freeview embarks on all HD future

High definition TV will become the norm in the UK from 1st January 2017 as the Freeview logo is withdrawn from new SD TVs and set-top boxes.

Freeview Managing Director Guy North said it was a “landmark moment” in the evolution of UK television and would pave the way for further improvements in picture quality, including Ultra HD.

Together with Digital UK and the DTG, Freeview has been working with television manufacturers and retailers to encourage the take up of HD equipment to deliver the best viewing experience for consumers and a more efficient technical standard. From 1 January 2017, no new standard definition TV equipment will be permitted to use the Freeview logo on products, packaging or on screen. Freeview is the UK’s most widely used TV service, currently watched in 19 million homes.

The withdrawal of the Freeview logo from new SD products was first announced in 2015 and has already helped drive a 36% drop in sales of SD TVs while HD sales have risen to 80% of the six million TVs sold in the UK every year.

“Moving Freeview to a fully HD product line-up is a landmark moment for the UK market and continues our track record of striving to deliver the best subscription-free TV service,” said Guy North.

“I’m delighted we are playing our part in making the best picture quality available to everyone and are already gearing up for UHD standards which will be offered in the Freeview Play technical specification from next year.”

Richard Lindsay-Davies, CEO of the DTG, added: “The DTG has long been a supporter of the wider adoption of HD, giving consumers better quality viewing, especially with the average TV screen size in homes increasing over recent years. This is a great step taken by Freeview which will deliver real benefits for UK TV viewers.”

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