Hundreds of thousands of unwanted analog televisions are expected to be relegated to front verges by the time Perth makes the switch to digital TV in just over a month.
Residents need to change over before 9am on April 16, when analog TV signals will be switched off across the metropolitan area and free-to-air TV will be broadcast in digital only.
To continue watching free-to-air TV, householders need to connect a set-top box or digital TV recorder to their analog TV or buy a TV with a built-in digital tuner. Set-top boxes can cost as little as $40.
More than 82,000 homes in WA, 49,000 of which are in Perth, could be without television because they still have TVs that will not work after the switch-off date, according to a digital tracker report.
A survey by Newspoll on behalf of the Federal Government's digital switchover task force has found about 93 per cent of households in the metropolitan area and 82 per cent of those in regional and remote WA have converted to digital.
Several regional towns, including Carnarvon, Esperance, Kununurra, Exmouth and Derby, were switched over last year because analog and digital TV could not be provided at the same time.
The remainder of regional and remote WA will follow on June 25.
Of the Perth households that have switched over, 83 per cent bought a new digital TV, while 13 per cent are using a set-top box.
In regional WA 87 per cent bought a new digital TV and 10 per cent got a set-top box.
Nationally, about 64 per cent said they recycled their old TV by keeping, donating or selling it, while 32 per cent threw their TV out.
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said improvements to digital TV reception were being made across Perth, with new services due to come on stream at Mandurah/Singleton, Perth and Two Rocks so people could access the full benefits of digital TV.More than 117,000 Perth households are eligible for free assistance through the household assistance scheme, with almost 20,000 taking up the scheme so far. In regional WA, more than 37,000 are eligible and 8300 have taken it up.
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