World map of digital television transition progress: Transition completed; all analog signals terminated Transition partially completed; most analog signals terminated Transition in progress; broadcasting both analog and digital signals Transition in early phases or has not yet started or planned, or is in early stages No information available
The digital television transition, also called the digital switchover (DSO), the analog switch-off (ASO), the digital migration, or the analog shutdown, is the process in which older analog televisionbroadcasting technology is converted to and replaced by digital television. Conducted by individual nations on different schedules, this primarily involves the conversion of analog terrestrial television broadcasting infrastructure to digital terrestrial (DTT), a major benefit being extra frequencies on the radio spectrum and lower broadcasting costs, as well as improved viewing qualities for consumers.
The transition may also involve analog cable conversion to digital cable or internet protocol television, as well as analog to digital satellite television. Transition of land based broadcasting was begun by some countries around 2000. By contrast, transition of satellite television systems was well underway or completed in many counties by this time. It is an involved process because the existing analog television receivers owned by viewers cannot receive digital broadcasts; viewers must either purchase new digital TVs, or converter boxes which change the digital signal to an analog signal or some other form of a digital signal (i.e. HDMI) which can be received on the older TV. Usually during a transition, a simulcast service is operated where a broadcast is made available to viewers in both analog and digital at the same time. As digital becomes more popular, it is expected that the existing analog services will be removed. In most places this has already happened, where a broadcaster has offered incentives to viewers to encourage them to switch to digital. Government intervention usually involves providing some funding for broadcasters and, in some cases, monetary relief to viewers, to enable a switchover to happen by a given deadline. In addition, governments can also have a say with the broadcasters as to what digital standard to adopt - either DVB-T, ATSC, ISDB-T, or DTMB. Governments can also require all receiving equipment sold in a country to support the necessary digital 'tuner'.
The switchover process is being accomplished on different schedules in different countries; in some countries it is being implemented in stages as in Australia, India or Mexico, where each region has a separate date to switch off. In others, the whole country switches on one date, such as the Netherlands. On 3 August 2003, Berlin became the world's first city to switch off terrestrial analog signals.Luxembourg was the first country to complete its terrestrial switchover, in September 2006.
Different standards have been developed for the broadcast transmission of digital terrestrial television, comparable to the older analog standards they replace: NTSC, PAL and SECAM. Broadcasters around the world choose and adopt one of these to be the format and technology behind the transmission. The standards are:
The European-made DVB-T, adopted by most of Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania
The American-made ATSC, adopted by much of the Americas and some of Asia and Oceania
The Japanese-made ISDB-T, adopted by some in Asia, most of South America, and a few in Africa
The Chinese-made DTMB, adopted by some in Asia and a few in Africa and the Americas
2006 Geneva Agreement
The "RRC-06" agreement in Geneva (hosted by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)) was signed by delegates from many countries, including most of Europe, Africa and Asia. The agreement set 17 June 2015 as the date after which countries may use frequencies currently assigned for analog television transmission for digital services (specifically DVB-T), without being required to protect the analog services of neighbouring countries against interference. This date was generally viewed as an internationally mandated analog switch-off date, at least along national borders - except for those operating on the VHF band which would be allowed until 17 June 2020.
These deadlines set by the agreement have been difficult to reach in certain regions, like in Africa where most countries missed the 2015 deadline, as well as South East Asia. High upgrade costs are often a reason cited to the slow transition in those regions.
The European Commission, on a different note, has recommended as at 28 October 2009 that digital switchover should be completed by 1 January 2012.
Analog only TVs are incapable of receiving over-the-air broadcasts without the addition of a set-top converter box. Consequently, a digital converter box - an electronic device that connects to an analog television - must be used in order to allow the television to receive digital broadcasts. In the United States, the government subsidized the purchase of such boxes for consumers via their coupon-eligible converter box program in 2009, funded by a small part of the billions of dollars brought in by a spectrum auction. The program was managed by the Department of Commerce through its National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
Televisions with integrated digital tuners have been available for a considerable time. This means that the need for a set-top box is usually no longer necessary with a new TV set.
Satellite and cable
Satellite broadcasting switched to digital much earlier than terrestrial broadcasting. The switchover process is much easier for satellite since only changes to the earth station equipment are needed on the transmission side and consumers are already used to having a set top box/decoder. In many places, the satellite switchover was complete before terrestrial switchover was even started. Cable on the other hand would switch off months, if not years after terrestrial would.
In countries where terrestrial is little used, the migration to digital satellite or cable is more realized. For instance, in Switzerland or the UAE, where terrestrial has low usage, the terrestrial switchover was not noticed by the general population. But in countries where terrestrial is the dominant method of watching TV, like Japan, Spain or Thailand, the switchover is a big deal as it affects the majority of the population.
Terrestrial digital switchover by country, at a glance
Algeria: Digital broadcasting started in 2009, analog signals were switched off on 10 November 2014.
Gabon had turned off all analog signals on 17 June 2016.
Ghana: Analog switch-off occurred in June 2015, switching to DVB-T.
Kenya: After DTT launched in 2008, analog switch off was supposed to take place in 2013, however media houses challenged the move in court and the switch off has since been moved to 31 December 2014 for the metropolitan areas and their surroundings while in the rest of the country switched to DVB-T2 in March 2015.
Mexico: Digital broadcasts started in 2000, with the first being Tijuana's XETV - an English-language television station that primarily served San Diego, California between the 1960s and the early 2010s. Analog shutdown was originally scheduled to occur in 2012, but on Thursday, 2 September 2010, Mexican government advanced the analog shutdown from 2012 to 2015. From 2013, areas began to be switched over regionally depending on the presence of digital terrestrial stations and a campaign headed by the SCT to distribute free television converters to households on the government welfare rolls. The first digital switchover was to begin on Tuesday, 28 May 2013 in Tijuana, but was postponed to 18 July due to the 2013 Baja California state elections. The switchover was completed nationwide on 31 December 2015, when all remaining analog television stations left the air. Mexico then instituted a nationwide remapping of network stations in late 2015 requiring most of them to map to the channel number in either Mexico City, or for regional networks, the main metro area served by the network's flagship station.
Bahrain: The analog terrestrial transmissions were terminated on Monday, 13 February 2012 and was replaced by a multiplex for Nilesat. The government plans to shut off analog cable by 31 March 2023. Bahrain was transitioning from using MPEG-2 to MPEG-4 for its terrestrial broadcasts, a process which began on Sunday, 26 August 2012. Bahrain adopted DVB-T2 in March 2013. Analog satellite transmission were switched off on Monday, 1 March 2004. Digital television launched terrestrially throughout Arab world on Thursday, 20 September 2007 (known as Nilesat).
Guam Complied with the FCC transition to digital on 12 June 2009 on all full-power stations.
Israel: started digital transmissions in MPEG-4 on Sunday 2 August 2009 and analog transmissions ended on Thursday 31 March 2011.
Analog closedown warning broadcast in Japan.
Japan: The analog shutdown began on 24 July 2010 in Suzu, Ishikawa as a pilot experiment. Analog terrestrial television transmissions in the remainder of Ishikawa Prefecture and 43 other prefectures, as well as analog Broadcast Satellite and Wowow services, ended at noon on Sunday 24 July 2011, along with the analog satellite services; three remaining prefectures (Fukushima, Iwate, and Miyagi) that were destroyed or heavily damaged in the 11 March 2011 9.0 magnitude Tohoku earthquake and its related nuclear accidents stopped analog broadcasting at noon on Saturday, 31 March 2012. In both of those cases, the analog transmitters themselves were switched off at midnight on the same day. Analog high-definition television broadcasting ended on Sunday, 30 September 2007. An analog cable service (known as Dejiana since 1 July 2011) continued to be broadcast, but starting on 1 April 2012, all cable providers in Japan were required to convert from analog to digital services. Most analog cable services were terminated between 24 July 2011 and April 2015. All television stations across the country are now broadcasting only in digital, ending an analog-digital simulcast period that began on Monday 1 December 2003 in the Kant? region (which expanded to all other prefectures over the next four years) and ended between 24 July 2011 and 31 March 2012 (when all analog transmissions were shut down).
Kyrgyzstan: DTT services rolled out officially in 2014, and the transition to digital ended in 2017.
Malaysia: The first DTTB services were rolled out in January 2014, starting in a few test areas, while full nationwide coverage to an estimated 98% populated areas is slated by the end of the analogue-digital simulcast period. The official launch of digital broadcasts was officiated on 6 June 2017 by the country Prime Minister with an estimate of 4.2 million digital television decoders are given free to citizens, including recipients of the government aid of 1Malaysia People's Aid (BR1M). The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Ministry further state that analogue broadcasting throughout Malaysia will be completely turned off in September 2019 with digital television broadcasting fully available to public by October.Langkawi become the first area of analogue television switch off that were executed on 21 July at 02:30 AM (UTC+8). Further on 6 August 2019, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Ministry released a complete list of transition date on the remaining areas. As announced by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) in late September, the full digital transition to be completed on 31 October 2019. The date on the remaining areas was then rescheduled with central and southern West Malaysia to be commenced on 30 September, northern and eastern coast of West Malaysia on 14 October and entire East Malaysia on 31 October. The switch over in West Malaysia are fully completed on 15 October at 12:30 AM. The final switch over in East Malaysia was completed on 31 October also at 12:30 AM as scheduled.
Mongolia: The country selected the standard of DVB-T2 with first launch in 2014. Full transition to digital terrestrial television broadcasting were completed in 2015.
South Korea: Digital switchover progressed region-by-region, with the first analog transmitters in Uljin, North Gyeongsang Province ending transmissions on Wednesday, 1 September 2010. Analog broadcasting official officially ended Monday 31 December 2012 at 04:00 KST when the analog cable television and analog transmitters in Seoul, Gyeonggi Province and Incheon ended transmissions. A few border analog transmitters targeting North Korea were switched off in June 2015.
Qatar: The analog terrestrial transmissions were terminated on Monday, 13 February 2012 and was replaced by a multiplex for Nilesat. The government plans to shut off analog cable by 31 March 2023. Qatar was transitioning from using MPEG-2 to MPEG-4 for its terrestrial broadcasts, a process which began on Sunday, 26 August 2012. Qatar adopted DVB-T2 in February 2013. Analog satellite transmission were switched off on Monday, 1 March 2004. Digital television launched terrestrially throughout Arab world on Monday, 1 January 2001 (known as Nilesat).
Saudi Arabia: The analog terrestrial transmissions were terminated on Monday, 13 February 2012 and was replaced by a multiplex for Nilesat. The government plans to shut off analog cable by 31 March 2023. Saudi Arabia was transitioning from using MPEG-2 to MPEG-4 for its terrestrial broadcasts, a process which began on Sunday, 26 August 2012. Saudi Arabia adopted DVB-T2 in March 2013. Analog satellite transmission were switched off on Monday, 1 March 2004. Digital television launched terrestrially throughout Arab world on Monday, 1 January 2001 (known as Nilesat).
Singapore: Digital terrestrial television was launched by Mediacorp in June 2006 (DVB-T) and December 2013 (DVB-T2). The country announced that free-to-air broadcaster Mediacorp will transmit all its free-to-air channels digitally in DVB-T2. In 2016, it was announced that analogue TV channels would cease its broadcast by the end of 2017 and Mediacorp TV channels will be broadcast in digital only. On 6 November 2017, IMDA announced that it had further extended their analogue broadcasting until 31 December 2018 (extended from the intended date of 19 February 2018), in order to facilitate more time for Singapore households to switch to digital TV as soon as possible. On the same day, an "Analogue" watermark was placed on the bottom of the channel logos (and later since 17 September 2018, reduced screen sizes with information on switching digital television) to differentiate televisions using analogue broadcasts. On 21 December 2018, the broadcast was extended by one day. At 00:00 on 2 January 2019, the digital transition was completed and normal programming on all analogue television signals was replaced by an information screen; the analogue signals ceased transmitting altogether on 6 January 2019.
Taiwan: Digital television launched terrestrially throughout Taiwan on Friday, 2 July 2004. Analog terrestrial television ended transmission on Saturday, 30 June 2012. The shut down of analog cable television is in progress.
United Arab Emirates: The analog terrestrial transmissions were terminated on Monday, 13 February 2012 and was replaced by a multiplex for Nilesat. The government plans to shut off analog cable by 31 March 2023. United Arab Emirates were transitioning from using MPEG-2 to MPEG-4 for its terrestrial broadcasts, a process which began on Sunday, 26 August 2012. United Arab Emirates adopted DVB-T2 in February 2013. Analog satellite transmission were switched off on Monday, 1 March 2004. Digital television launched terrestrially throughout Arab world on Monday, 1 January 2001 (known as Nilesat).
Uzbekistan: The launch of digital broadcasting began on 15 January 2018. The first regions to turn off their analogue broadcasts were Andijan, Fergana, Namangam and Tashkent Region. On 15 July 2018, the switchoff was completed on the city of Tashkent, and on 5 December 2018, the shutdown of analog television in Uzbekistan was completed.
Andorra completed its switch-off on Tuesday 25 September 2007.
Armenia: Has shut down analog signals on 10 July 2015.
Austria: Began analog switch-off on Monday, 5 March 2007, progressing from the west to the east. The analog broadcast was shut down nationwide at the end of 2010 regarding the main transmitters. The last analog translators were switched off on 7 June 2011.
Azerbaijan: Began analog switch-off on Sunday, 17 October 2010, completed on 17 June 2015.
Belarus: Analogue broadcasting was disabled 15 May 2015 in the UHF band and 16 June 2015 in the VHF band (channels 6-12). The final analogue switch-off occurred at 31 December 2015.
Belgium: Media regulations are under regional legislation. Flanders switched off analog television on Monday 3 November 2008, while in Wallonia, all analog services were switched off on Monday, 1 March 2010, making the country completely serviced by digital signal. However, analog cable is still used by many cable subscribers, so therefore a cable switchover is unlikely to happen in the near future.
Bulgaria: Bulgaria launched a free-to-air platform in the Sofia region, starting in November 2004. The Communications Regulatory Commission (CRC) has said that it received 6 bids for the licence to build and operate Bulgaria's two nationwide DTT networks. A second licence tender for the operation of 3 DTT multiplexes was open until 27 May 2009. Following the closing of this process, Hannu Pro, part of Silicon Group, and with Baltic Operations has secured the license to operate three DTT multiplexes in Bulgaria by the country's Communications Regulatory Commission (CRC) Bulgaria completed the transition to digital broadcasting in September 2013.
Croatia: Analog television broadcasts were switched off for all national TV channels on Tuesday 5 October 2010 at 12:35 and for local TV channels on Saturday 20 November 2010.
Cyprus terminated all analog transmissions on Thursday 30 June 2011 and moved to digital-only transmissions in MPEG-4 on Friday 1 July 2011.
Czech Republic: The last analog retransmitters in the south-east Moravia and the northern Moravia - Silesia were switched off on Saturday, 30 June 2012.
Denmark switched off all terrestrial analog services at midnight on Sunday 1 November 2009. Analogue cable was switched off on 9 February 2016. Analogue satellite were terminated by 2006 when DR 2 and TV3 ended their analogue signals on the Intelsat 10-02/Thor satellite at 0.8°W. DR 2 was the last ever broadcast using the D2-MAC standard when it closed on 1 July.
Greenland launched digital services in Nuuk in August 2002. The last settlement that upgraded to digital was Siorapaluk in 2012, with analogue switched off in October.
Faroe Islands launched DTT in December 2002. Most of the analogue signals were switched off immediately.
Estonia's analog television was switched off completely on Thursday, 1 July 2010.
Analog closedown warning broadcast in Finland.
Finland ceased analog terrestrial transmissions nationwide at 04:00, Saturday, 1 September 2007 (the switch-off was previously planned for midnight but a few extra hours were added for technical reasons). This was controversial, as the cost of a digital TV set in Finland at the time was heavily criticised and saw a substantial decrease in how much the television license cost. Cable TV viewers continued to receive analog broadcasts until the end of February 2008.
Germany started the switch-off in the Berlin area, beginning on Friday, 1 November 2002 and completing on Monday 4 August 2003 becoming the first city to do so. "Simulcast" digital transmissions started in other parts of the country in an effort to prepare for a full switchover. The switch-off of terrestrial analog transmitters was completed on Tuesday 25 November 2007, except one main transmitter in Bad Mergentheim, which was shut down in June 2009. Analog satellite receivers were still used by 6% of households in 2010 - the highest in Europe. The analog satellite transmissions (broadcasting on Astra 19.2°E) were switched off on Monday 30 April 2012, being the last in Europe. However, analog cable is still used by about 30% of the population and 55% of all cable broadcasts. The cable TV provider Unitymedia switched off analog cable on 27 June 2017.
Georgia: Analog broadcasts should have been switched off 17 June 2015, but due to the flooding in Tbilisi, which occurred on the night of 13 to 14 June 2015 analogue switch-off happened on 1 July 2015.
Greece: The analog terrestrial transmissions were terminated on Friday, 6 February 2015.
Hungary: Hungarian analog terrestrial transmissions stopped on Thursday, 31 October 2013, after completing two phases that ended on 31 July and 31 October, respectively.
Iceland: All analog terrestrial transmissions were switched off on Monday, 2 February 2015.
Ireland: Digital terrestrial television was launched in Ireland as Saorview on Friday 29 October 2010. At launch it had 5 standard-definition channels and 1 high-definition channel. The analog service was terminated on Wednesday 24 October 2012 and was replaced by a second multiplex for Saorview. A small number of low power independent analog re-broadcast systems remained licensed until the Monday 31 December 2012. Analogue cable was shut down on 8 April 2019. Analogue satellite from Astra 28.2°E was discontinued on Thursday 27 September 2001.
Italy: The conversion to digital television progressed region-by-region. It started in Sardinia on Wednesday 15 October 2008, and was completed on Wednesday 4 July 2012, when the last analog transmitters in the Province of Palermo were shut down. The switchover was politically controversial due to a 2004 law that seemed to favor Mediaset, owned by the Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, in the television market. A 2006 bill proposed by Paolo Gentiloni passed the government of Romano Prodi that would make one of Mediaset's channels as well as one from public broadcaster RAI move to digital three years before the switch. The bill was called "tailored for political revenge" by Berlusconi. In 2011 the European Court of Justice ruled that the digital switchover in Italy was illegally subsidised favoring Berlusconi's media group. Analogue satellite broadcasts were switched off from the Hot Bird 13°E satellite on 29 April 2005 by RAI.
Latvia's analog television completely converted to digital broadcasting on Tuesday 1 June 2010.
Lithuania: The switch-off of the analog terrestrial transmissions was completed on Monday, 29 October 2012.
Luxembourg shut down their last analog transmitter on UHF Channel 21 on Friday 31 December 2010.
Netherlands moved to digital-only terrestrial broadcasting on Monday, 11 December 2006, being the second country to do so. The switch-off was noticed by few, since the overwhelming majority receive TV via cable and only around 74,000 households relied on terrestrial over-the-air broadcasts. The switch-off was helped greatly as cable continued to use analog distribution, and thus consumers' old tuners continued to be useful. In March 2018, major cable provider Ziggo has announced that it will gradually phase out analogue cable TV transmissions in the next two years. Analogue satellite transmissions from Astra 19.2°E were halted on 18 August 1996, just two months after digital was introduced. This was felt by few people, however, due to low satellite usage.
Norway: The switch-off of the analog transmissions started in March 2008 and was completed on Tuesday 1 December 2009. Norway started its DTT service on the Saturday 1 September 2007. Analog satellite broadcasts of NRK and TV 2 on the Thor 4.3°W satellite ended on 15 October 2002.
Poland: Terrestrial television in Poland is broadcast using a digital DVB-T system. First test DVB-T emission was carried in Warsaw at 9 November 2001. In April 2004, first DVB-T transmitter near Rzeszów started operation, and local TVP division started to market set-top boxes allowing to receive it. The shutdown of analog broadcasts took place in 7 steps from 7 November 2012 to 23 July 2013 when analog terrestrial transmissions were completely terminated. Analog broadcasts on satellite ended when TVN stopped its analog transmission on the Hot Bird 13°E satellite in 2008.
Portugal: Digital terrestrial broadcasts started on Wednesday 29 April 2009. Portugal's government hoped to cover 80% of the territory with digital terrestrial TV by the end of 2009, and simulcasts remained until Thursday 26 April 2012, when the analog broadcasting ended. This switchover began on Thursday 12 January 2012. Analog cable is still available from all pay-TV providers (including fiber), for homes with multiple televisions. There are no plans in place to switch-off analog cable. The digital versions of all channels have traditionally been encrypted and could only be accessed with a proprietary set-top-box, which subscribers had to pay for with a monthly fee. Starting in October 2017, cable provider NOS unencrypted the digital versions of its base channels, enabling them to be tuned directly by televisions with support for MPEG-4 (or digital terrestrial) or any freely available digital tuner. Channels belonging to subscription packs, as well as premium channels, still require a proprietary set top box to be viewed. Other pay-TV providers - Vodafone, NOWO and Meo - similarly no longer encrypt the digital versions of their base channels.
Romania has one of the highest pay-TV penetration rates in Europe, with over 98% of homes receiving cable or satellite TV services. Also over 90% of population is covered with DVB-T2 digital terrestrial television signal. The last analog transmitters were switched off on 1 May 2018 when TVR decided to order the shut down due to low demand and high operating costs.
Russia: On 22 December 2018, Russia completed the creation of the world's largest digital television broadcasting system, with 10,080 transmitters operating at 5,040 sites throughout the country. On 3 December 2018, analog transmissions were switched off in the Tver Region including the city of Tver. Analog transmissions in Ryazan, Tula, Yaroslavl, Ulyanovsk, Penza, Magadan, and Chechnya ended on 11 February 2019, while those in 20 other regions which includes Moscow and the Moscow Region were switched off on 15 April 2019. On 3 June 2019, analog transmissions in 36 regions were discontinued which include the oblasts of Vladimir, Samara, Nizhny Novgorod, Krasnoyarsk and Oryol. Switchover in the last 21 regions has completed on 14 October 2019. The regions include St. Petersburg, the Leningrad Region, the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol. Channels that are not offered as multiplex services (i.e. federal and regional channels) will only be available on cable and satellite television services after that date.
San Marino completed its switch-off on Thursday 2 December 2010.
Serbia launched its first DTT transmissions in 2005. The first DTT-only channel was made available in 2008. As of 2013, the DVB-T2 network covers Belgrade and much of Vojvodina, several cities in ?umadija and Western Serbia and the southern city of Ni?. Digital TV switchover for 98% of citizens started on 1 September 2014. Transition progressed in six stages. First switchoff took place in Vr?ac on 15 April 2015. Last switchoff took place on 7 June 2015.
Slovakia: Slovakia finished analog transmission broadcasts on Monday, 31 December 2012.
Slovenia: The switch-off of main transmitters was completed on Wednesday 1 December 2010. The last local analog transmitters were switched off on Thursday 30 June 2011.
Analog closedown warning broadcast in Spain
Spain: The switch-off of the analog terrestrial transmissions was completed on Saturday 3 April 2010. The switch-off was successful, as about 70% of Spanish television transmissions are terrestrial, so it was easy for people to just switch to the digital signal. Spain started its DTT service on Wednesday 30 November 2005.
Sweden: The switch-off of the analog terrestrial network progressed region-by-region. It started on the island of Gotland on Monday, 19 September 2005, and was completed on Monday 15 October 2007, when the last analog SVT1 transmitters in Blekinge and western Scania were shut down. Cable broadcasters continue to broadcast in analog. Analog broadcasts from the Sirius and Thor satellites were ended by April 2004.
Switzerland (including Liechtenstein) began with the switch-off on Monday 24 July 2006 in Ticino and continued with Engadin on Monday 13 November 2006. The switch-off was completed on Monday 26 November 2007. A very high percentage of Swiss viewers receive their signals via cable distributors. By 2012 40% of cable viewers had switched to digital. Analog cable was switched off on 1 January 2017. The country switched off its terrestrial network entirely in 2019 due to low penetration.
Australia: Digital television commenced in Australia's five most populous cities on Monday 1 January 2001. The Mildura region was the first to terminate its analog network, on Wednesday 30 June 2010. Digital switchover was originally expected to be complete by Tuesday 31 December 2013, however, the last regions to switch over (Melbourne and Remote Eastern/Central Australia) did so slightly earlier, on Tuesday 10 December 2013 at 9:00 am. Until the switch-off in the respective areas, free-to-air stations were simulcast, along with digital-only channels like ABC2. Cable television networks began simulcasting in 2004 and analog cable services were switched off in April 2007. The switchover was co-ordinated by the Digital Switchover Taskforce operating under the federal Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.
Micronesia: FSMTC (FSM Telecommunications Company) provides a subscription based digital over the air (DVB-T) service to Kosrae, Chuuk and Yap. This provides various international television channels and a local information channel. No local television broadcasters operate in FSM.
New Zealand: Digital terrestrial television broadcasts began officially in April 2008. analog PAL switchoff started on 30 September 2012 with the North Island's Hawke's Bay region and the South Island's West Coast region and finished with the Upper North Island which was switched off 1 December 2013.
Transitions in progress
Botswana began digital broadcasts in 2008, using ISDB-T. Analogue is set to be terminated in 2024.
Benin is in transition to digital as of 2018.
Burundi DTT broadcasts launched on 30 April 2014 and it was expected to shut analog down at the end of that year. However the transition was not easy and analog remained on air, still as of 2017.
Mali: The country's regulator authorized TNTSAT Africa to start the transition to digital in 2018.
Morocco: DTT launched in March 2007. Analogue transmitters on UHF band were switched off on 17 June 2015. Only Al Aoula will stay on analog signal. However, analogue channels in the VHF band are still on air, with an eventual switch off date scheduled for 17 June 2020.
Sudan is broadcasting a number of multiplexes in DVB-T2 (SD & HD) from the nationwide of Sudan TV since late 2015. A single analogue UHF channel remains. Analog television will be turned off on 13 February 2020.
Tunisia began digital broadcasts in 2003, using DVB-T, then since 2015, using DVB-T2. Analog television will be turned off on 13 February 2021.
Argentina: Digital television broadcasts started on Tuesday, 9 September 2008 in Buenos Aires. The analog network was to be terminated on 1 January 2019, but it was further postponed until 2021.
Bahamas: The public broadcaster BCB transitioned to digital in September 2016.
Bolivia: The President of the Authority for the Regulation and Control of Telecommunications and Transport (ATT), Roy Méndez, said that in November 2019, the analogue switch-off will take place in La Paz, El Alto, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz.
Analog closedown warning broadcast in Brazil.
Brazil: Began free-to-air HD digital transmissions, after a period of test broadcasts, on Sunday, 2 December 2007 in São Paulo, expanding in 2008 to Brasília, Rio de Janeiro, and Belo Horizonte. Digital broadcasts were phased into the other 23 state capitals in the following years, and to the remaining cities by Tuesday 31 December 2013. The country started on 1 March 2016 in Rio Verde, Goiás as a pilot experiment, followed by the Federal District and main cities and metropolitan regions from 17 November 2016 to 2020, when it is expected the ending of all analog television broadcasting.
Canada: Canada's DTV transition was completed in 28 mandatory markets on Wednesday, 31 August 2011. Some CBC analog transmitters in mandatory markets were permitted to operate for another year, and transmitters outside mandatory markets were given the option of converting to digital, or remaining in analog. The CBC decided to shut down all (more than 600) of its remaining analog transmitters on Tuesday, 31 July 2012, without replacing them. Also on 31 August 2011, all full-power TV transmitters had to vacate channels 52 to 69. There are a very small number of community-based transmitters broadcasting in analogue, which will be shut down no later than 2022; see Digital television in Canada.
Cayman Islands: Broadcaster Cayman 27 announced that it will start broadcasting digitally on ATSC in 2012.
Chile: The transition to digital started in 2012. ASO has been delayed and is now set to be 2022.
Colombia: Digital television broadcasts started on Monday, 20 September 2010. The government planned to close down analog broadcast on 31 December 2019, but it was postponed until 2021
Costa Rica: The country was scheduled to shut down analog signals permanently in December 2018 but this was postponed to 15 August 2019.
Cuba began to propose DVB-T in May 2009. However, Cuba opted for the Chinese DTMB standard and began tests in 2013, with new digital transmitters being rolled out and a shutoff date in 2021.
Curacao: Started DTT broadcasts based on DVB-T in 2009. No date yet when to switch off the older NTSC analog broadcasts.
Dominican Republic: The Dominican Government once set a final analog shut down date of all analog transmissions on 24 September 2015. However, INDOTEL, a telecommunications department of the Dominican Government, postponed it to 9 August 2021.
Ecuador: The analog switch off was delayed several times. In September 2018 the telecom ministry said that the first phase will start in May 2020 in Quito and will continue until December 2023.
Honduras: First phase began on 31 December 2016, second phase will be completed on 31 December 2019.
Jamaica: Deployed the ATSC standard for digital terrestrial TV and is aiming for an analog swich off by 2021.
Panama: Analog TV sets may no longer be sold effective 11 June 2018. From this date, existing stocks may be sold only if provided with a free DVB-T setup box. Starting 11 December 2018, no analog TV sets may be sold. Switchover date is Unknown.
Paraguay: The transmission of digital television broadcasts started in August 2011, by TV Pública (which belongs to the Paraguayan government) with an initial coverage area of 25 kilometres (about 16 miles) from Asuncion downtown. The analog television system switch-off was taking place in 2020 however in 22 January 2019 La nacion reported the country pushed it back to 2021.
Peru: Digital television broadcasts started in Lima and Callao (Territory 1) in March 2010, and analog broadcasts are scheduled to be terminated on 20 June 2020; Arequipa, Cusco, Trujillo, Piura y Huancayo (territory 2) has a date due to start digital transition somewhere between April and June 2018 and analog broadcasts are scheduled to be terminated on 3 January 2023.
United States: On Monday, 8 September 2008, Wilmington, North Carolina became the first city in the United States to fully switch over from analog to digital broadcasts. All analog signals were terminated at noon. This switchover was a test by FCC to make further improvements to the transition process before the whole nation was switched over to digital. Having moved the deadline from 17 February 2009 (some stations still chose to shut down on that date), all VHF transmissions (stations 2-13) and most full-power UHF analog transmitters were shut down on 12 June 2009, with the exception of low-power stations, and "nightlight" stations which broadcast PSAs on the transition until 12 July 2009. Television transmission on channels 52 to 69 was required to cease by Saturday, 31 December 2011, to allow the FCC to commence with the first phase of spectrum reallocation for other services. Class A low-power stations were required to transition by 1 September 2015. The deadline for low-power and translator stations was suspended on 24 April 2015, due to concerns that the then-upcoming spectrum auction could "potentially displace a significant number of LPTV and TV translator stations", and would "[require] analog stations to incur the costs of transitioning to digital before completion of the auction and repacking process". After the auction's completion in 2017, the FCC announced 13 July 2021 as the new analog low-power shutoff date.
Uruguay: Began broadcasting digital television in 2010. The analogue switch-off was planned for 21 November 2015, but was postponed indefinitely.
Venezuela: Digital television transmition began in 2007 for the broadcasting of 2007 Copa América. Later in 20 February 2013 transmissions began nationalwide. Analogue is set to be terminated in 2020
Afghanistan: 4 channels of DVB-T2 were launched in Kabul in June 2014. ASO has however been repeatedly delayed. There is no date for the switchover.
Bangladesh: Has adopted DVB-T and tested broadcasts as of 2014. Public broadcaster BTV aims to make the country digital by 2021, its 50th anniversary of independence.
Bhutan: Adopted DVB-T. The original analog switch off date was set to be 2017, although it did not occur.
Cambodia: DVB-T2 was launched on Tuesday, 9 November 2010, however as at 23 December 2017 the only FTA DVB-T channels appear to be pay TV channels that the provider has erroneously neglected to encrypt. The incumbent FTA channels have thus far not provided DVB-T broadcasts. The Cambodian government have pushing ahead its co-operation with China for the digital transition from analogue with China's DTMB system. Full digital transition is estimated by the government to fully commenced by 2023.
China (private networks): After CCTV completely turned off analogue, commercially owned private broadcasters also began converting to digital; they will be switched off no later than 2020.
Hong Kong: The original digital switchover plan from PAL to DTMB was supposed to take place in 2012. After postponing several times, the government confirmed to terminate analogue television broadcast at 1 December 2020 00:00 HKT.
India: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has set the deadlines for the completion of Phase I (Metro cities) by 31 December 2019, Phase II (cities having a population of more than one million) by 31 December 2021, and Phase III (the rest of India) by 31 December 2023.
Indonesia: Digital television transition took place in 2 stages. The first phase of simulcast will be started on January 2020 in 12 provinces, and planning to second simulcast in 22 provinces at March 2020. Analog broadcasting official completely turned off at 2022 Indonesian National Broadcast Day or 1 April 2022. Digital terrestrial television was launched on 21 December 2010 (DVB-T) and 20 November 2013 (DVB-T2). After the auction's completion in 2022, the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (KOMINFO) announced 1 September 2025 as the new analog cable shutoff date.
Iran: First digital television broadcasting were commenced in 2009, using the DVB-T MPEG-4 standard, with 40% of population having access to digital TV by mid-2011. There is no deadline yet for converting analog signals to digital.
Kuwait: Is in transition to DVB-T2, stewarded by GatesAir. Phase 2 of the DTT rollout was finished by May 2017. No analog switch off date yet.
Laos: Lao National Television joined China's Yunnan Digital TV Company to establish Lao Digital TV with DTMB system in 2007. Lao Deputy Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism Savankhone Razmountry further state that their country was making every effort to fully switch from the analogue television system to DTMB by 2020.
Macau: Adopted the DTMB standard as Mainland China and Hong Kong in 2008.
Myanmar: Digital broadcasts launched in 2013. The switchover date has been set to be December 2020.
Nepal: Digital terrestrial broadcasts launched in 2018. That same year, analog cable television was shut in the capital Kathmandu.
Oman: The process started in 2012 with the deployment of a DVB-T2 system.
Philippines: In June 2010, the National Telecommunications Commission set a deadline of 11:59 p.m. on 31 December 2015 for the discontinuation of analog television. However, since the last quarter of 2014, the digitization deadline has been postponed to 2019 and should be expected that all analog broadcasts will be shut off in 2023.ZOE Broadcasting Network's DZOZ-TV became the first station in the country to permanently cease analog terrestrial operations on 28 February 2017, signaling the start of the country's transition to digital-only broadcasting. Digital television in the Philippines uses the Japanese ISDB standards for its terrestrial broadcast.
Thailand: The Thai National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) and broadcasters conducted a field trial for digital terrestrial transmission of DVB-T2 in Bangkok area in 2013. The following year, digital terrestrial television began to be launched. Analogue signals switch off will start in 2017 for some channels before the rest which will be fully completed in 2020. By 2018, rural areas in Thailand sees the transition from analogue to digital. As of September 2018, Channel 3 remains the only broadcaster to offer analogue services; it is scheduled to broadcast exclusively in digital from late 2019.
Vietnam: The country launched DVB-T tests in 2002 and it was rolled out nationwide in 2005. Analogue signals first shut on 28 May 2014, and full migration into digital television is expected by 2020 or later.
Albania: The original analog switch off deadline was set to be 17 June 2015, however this was missed because of troubles. Analog channels were first shut off on 10 September 2018 in the areas of Durrës and Tirana, but they were restored the following day because the supply of decoders wasn't enough to cover the demand. The date was pushed several times until October 2019, where analog channels were finally shut off. Digital transaction is completed in the areas of Tirana, Durrës, Fier, Beat and Korçë, while in Elbasan, Vlorë and Shkodër analog television is still available. Analog satellite broadcasts stopped in 2002 shortly before the introduction of digital satellite.
Bosnia and Herzegovina : There was a DVB-T service service launched in 2015 but it wasn't available on all parts of the country until now. Digital television started to happen. First stage of the transition to digital broadcasting which covered Sarajevo, Mostar and Banja Luka was completed on 14 October 2016. The second and third phase will cover six remaining areas for completing MUX-A in the whole territory of the country in the future but for now there's no date for that.
Moldova: Launched its first DTT service in November 2016. Analog broadcasts were expected to be discontinued from 1 March 2020. The process is proving to be somewhat difficult due to the high costs of upgrading to digital.
Transnistria DTT based on DVB-T started broadcasting on 30 December 2012 in testing phase until 2015. The DVB-T2 public rollout commenced in April 2016. Analog broadcasts for Transnistria are expected to be shut in the period 2018-2019.
Ukraine: All privately owned networks' analog broadcasts were switched off on 1 August 2018 in the Kiev region, on 1 September 2018 in most parts of the country. The channels of UA:PBC were switched off in September 2018 - January 2019 in most parts of the country. Meanwhile, all the channels at Russia-bordering regions, and some local channels (nationwide) that didn't yet get the license for digital broadcasting, will still broadcast in analog until 31 December 2019, after which they will be discontinuing analog broadcasts. However, in some areas, there are also some commercial channels staying in analog.
Fiji Introduced its digital terrestrial service called Walesi in testing phase 2016 and rolled out to public in December 2017. Switchover is planned to start in 2020.
Kiribati DTT in DVB-T2 form was introduced with help from Papua New Guinea in 2018, first rolling out in the main island Tarawa.
Vanuatu The main public channel made the switch to digital in October 2016.
Transitions not yet started or planned
Angola Trials using the ISDB-T standard were tested in 2011. Later in 2013 the state decided to use DVB-T2 instead, with a launch date for 2017. However this was reviewed once again and in 2019 Angola picked ISDB-T to be the standard for its future DTT network.
Chad: Deployment of DTT is being planned as of 2017 together with StarTimes. Government announced that year to accelerate the process.
Djibouti: Public broadcaster RTD has made plans in 2018 to create a DTT network.
Sierra Leone: In June 2013, the country signed a deal with the Chinese StarTimes to manage a migration to digital TV. However the process has been slow and there is still no DTT operating as of 2017.
Somaliland: A switchover to digital TV was part of the government's 2012-2016 National Development Plan. However it missed the international 2015 deadline to launch its DTT network.
South Sudan The state broadcaster SSBC has expressed interest in DVB-T2, but no budget has been allocated for the project.
Zimbabwe The DTT project started in 2015. However digital transmission has still not been rolled out as of 2019, mainly because of budgetary issues. The government is still committed to make the switchover.
Barbados: As of 2012, public broadcaster CBC chose the ATSC standard for its future DTT network.
Belize has not yet introduced DTT. Head of broadcasting division Ilham Ghazi and telecom director Justin Barrow said in September 2018 that a switchover is not currently planned as extra spectrum space is not demanded.
Grenada: Digital switchover still being planned as of 2014.
Guatemala started testing ISDB-T broadcasts in December 2017, with the aim of rolling out the services soon and an analog switch off date of 2022.
Guyana made a roadmap to a transition between 2014 and 2017. The DTT network is not yet rolled out.
Haiti: DTT made its experimental launch in December 2016, using the ATSC standard.
Nicaragua chose the ISDB-T standard in 2015. The first DTT trials began in March 2018.
Saint Lucia: According to a 2012 ITU report, no DTT is currently being planned in Saint Lucia. Analogue cable transmissions were shut during 2013.
Trinidad and Tobago estimated to be completed by 2020 but as of 28 October 2019 no terrestrial TV station has switched to digital broadcasting yet. ATSC is still being considered.
Lebanon: In January 2015 a pilot project on DTT was launched from Télé Liban broadcasting sites. The service is not yet publicly rolled out.
Maldives: In 2015 the Maldives picked the ISDB-T standard for its DTT network. The service is yet to roll out.
North Korea: It was reported in 2013 that North Korea had tested digital broadcasting trials in 2012, without further information. On 19 January 2015, Korean Central Television, the country's state broadcaster, began broadcasting via digital satellite. However, there is no confirmed plan yet to introduce digital terrestrial broadcasts.
Sri Lanka: Television industry in Sri Lanka has been preparing to digitalise itself for more than half a decade but government policy of uncertainties have confused broadcasters and caused many delays. A 2014 television digitalisation deal between Sri Lankan previous government and Japan are delayed up until present. In 2018, a Sri Lankan company named Television and Radio Network (TRN) offering to launch nationwide free digital television switch using the DVB-T2 system in contrast to Japanese proposal of ISDB-T system.
Syria: Because of the conflict in Syria, the launch of a DTT network and a transition has been put on hold as of 2016.
Tajikistan: The country adopted DVB-T2 in 2014. The government planned to start transitioning in 2015, although this has not occurred as of yet. The exclusion of private broadcasters and stakeholders is one of the reasons for the delay.
Timor-Leste: On 11 December 2018, the Timor-Leste cabinet has given Secretary of State for Social Communication Merício Juvenal dos Reis permission to sign a Sino-Timor-Leste agreement for the introduction of Chinese digital television format of DTMB into the country. On 18 June 2019, the groundbreaking ceremony for the China-aided demonstration project of the DTMB was held at the China Radio and Television Station in Timor-Leste. The work subsequently began on 21 June.
Abkhazia: The telecom chairman Lasha Shamba said in 2019 that there is a project in managing a digital switch but that the territory is not ready yet due to lack of funding. The analog switch off in Russia is proving to cause problems for Abkhazians who currently watch Russian relay terrestrial broadcasts in analog.
Kosovo: The government published a plan for a switchover in 2015. As of 2019 however, there is no DTT network in operation yet.
South Ossetia: DTT is not yet rolled out in the territory. Its creation has been postponed due to funds.
Turkey launched trial digital transmissions in 2006 and originally planned to gradually handle the switchover, with a completion date of March 2015. In 2013 the broadcasting regulator awarded a license to a firm; the award was voided in 2014 after the country's constitutional court upheld a complaint against the process. New licenses have been proposed, but as of 2018, Turkey still has no DTT network. However, with the construction of a new "digital" transmitter in Çanakkale, it is expected for digital DVB-T2 broadcasts to finally begin testing in 2020. The final analogue satellite broadcasts from TRT ended in February 2006.
Nauru: As of 2014, the country is planning to create and migrate to digital terrestrial TV.
Niue: Plans were made in 2016 by the BCN to make a future switch to digital broadcasting.
^"Announcement". Digea. December 2014. Archived from the original on 6 February 2015. ANNOUNCEMENT Saturday, 27 December 2014 the morning will begin digital broadcasting (while stopping analogue) of the centers: Agios Athanasios Water Tower Gate Tsotyli Vounasa Royal Polygyros Delvinaki Curse Granitsopoula Igoumenitsa Korfovouni Amfilochia Those viewers covered by these centers will need to have receiver (TV or decoder) that supports MPEG4 technology and coordinate the morning of 27 December the new frequencies. Those viewers already receive terrestrial digital TV signal need not make any action.