In just over a week, most terrestrial emissions in the DVB-T standard will be turned off in the Dolnośląskie and Lubuskie regions. Under the old standard, only MUX-8 channels (TVP Kultura HD, TVP Female, Metro, Zoom TV, Nowa TV, WP) and stations from local multiplexes, whose coverage is limited, will be broadcast. A person who does not have a tuner or TV that supports the DVB-T2 / HEVC standard will lose access to, among others TVP1, TVP2, TVP Info, TVN, Polsat, Puls. Unless it is within the range of a local multiplex that provides select trade channels. This would be the case in Wrocław and Świdnica. The process of transition to the DVB-T2 / HEVC standard It will cover other regions of Poland in the coming months. It will expire at the end of June.
Who is at risk of signal loss?
The National Media Institute estimates that 1.7 million families are not ready for change. That’s 3-4 million viewers. It is not known how many of them live in the areas that will be affected in the first place. However, the problem mainly affects the elderly, who are often reclusive, who do not use the Internet. As much as 30 percent of households do not even know that a change in the broadcast standard is imminent. Media campaigns conducted by all broadcasters, testing of transmission multiples in DVB-T2 / HEVC, a special “Checking TV” program launched by Telewizja Polska led to a slight improvement in public awareness. In the fall, fewer than 2.3 million households were unprepared for the new standard.
The situation is expected to improve somewhat thanks to the new media campaign, which is now expected to reach all terrestrial channels. The campaign must start now. If not, then The black screen on March 28 will be the primary catalyst for any movement. People who see this may view it as a cyber attack in relation to the situation outside our eastern borders. I am counting on an exciting discussion, action, and the launch of a national campaign as soon as possible, which will help the Poles inform them – Miroslav Kalinovsky, director of the National Media Institute, recently argued.
Coupon PLN 100 for the purchase of a set-top box to encourage Poles to purchase equipment. The law relating to this matter is already in force. The voucher will be available online or via Poczta Polska from Monday. Recently, Parliament received a draft PLN 250 subsidy for the purchase of a TV. The legislative process may not end before the first shutdown of transmitters in the DVB-T standard. Some people will only go to the store when they lose access to their favorite TV channels.
“It will be difficult to delay switching to DVB-T2 / HEVC”
We are talking about possible scenarios related to the transition to the new terrestrial standard with Michał Kanownik, President of the Digital Poland Federation, for example manufacturers of television equipment such as Samsung, LG, Sony and Panasonic.
Adrian Gąbka, Wirtualnemedia.pl: Will there be chaos in these regions after March 28, when the DVB-T signal is turned off in the Dolnośląskie and Lubuskie regions? Is there a danger that some old people will view it as a hacking attack from Russia or a war?
Michal Kanonic, President of the Digital Poland Association: The first stage of the transition to the new digital terrestrial television broadcasting standard will be applied to areas further from Poland’s eastern border, and other media, such as radio and the Internet, will continue to operate unchanged when the new standard is introduced. So it can be doubted that the upcoming change will not be seen as a hostile act. However, an intense media campaign, especially in the areas mentioned above, may help reduce potential doubts and fears arising from changing the DTT broadcast standard.
Due to the ongoing war in Ukraine, it was considered to change the date of switching the standard of terrestrial television broadcasting, but for technical and procedural reasons this would be very difficult. Postponing the delivery date of DVB-T2 / HEVC means interfering with contracts signed by broadcasters, the decision of the Office of Electronic Communications and plans for technical development. Although it is possible, changing the date of entry into force of the new digital terrestrial broadcast standard is an important logistical process. It is impossible to do this by a single administrative decision.
From Monday, the voucher will be redeemable in 150 stores
The additional PLN 100 decoder law was signed by the president. The seller’s registration also began. A financing project in the amount of PLN 250 for a TV set has just appeared. Is the government’s work too late?
A scholarship is accepted in the form of a voucher and More than 150 stores have signed up for the support program. From Monday, March 21, it will be possible to get and redeem a voucher in stores that have joined the program.. Moreover, a special government media campaign will be launched this month, aimed at communicating the ongoing program of co-financing for the purchase of television sets. Therefore, we hope that the knowledge of the approved solutions will reach the recipients on time.
In fact, the bill, which allowed to increase the subsidy for the purchase of televisions to the amount of PLN 250, appeared late in relation to the previously announced measures, but is being addressed urgently and is likely to enter into force next week. As a consortium, we’ve been informed from the start that only your new TV set, not a set-top box, can provide the full range of benefits of the new DVB-T2/HEVC standard. It is good, then, that the TV subsidy was finally included in the government program and the amount was correspondingly higher.
It should be noted that the media campaign to change the standards of terrestrial television broadcasting has been going on since last fall. Although we have some comments on TV commercials promoting the change in broadcasting, as they only promoted receivers as a way to receive the new standard, the truth is that knowledge about the upcoming inclusion of the DVB-T2/HEVC standard for it has been widely available since October 2021. Public awareness of it has increased considerably since then.
Some people will not have time to replace equipment
Is there a need to postpone the transition to DVB-T2 / HEVC or broadcast at least the old standard of the selected channels? Are we in danger of chaos?
Given the scale of this technological shift, it is inevitable There will be a certain group of recipients who will not have time to adapt their families to receive the new digital terrestrial television. However, chaos certainly will not prevail. It should also be remembered that the change in the broadcast standard will occur in stages, and it is likely that each subsequent standard will run more smoothly than the previous one.
Moreover, research and experience from the domestic market clearly show that Poles postpone their purchasing decisions until the last minute. This means that even the most intense media campaign taking place in January or February 2022 will not change the fact that the purchase of equipment for the new standard will take place only at the last minute before its activation.
Therefore, the key is currently the final stage of the campaign, which is taking place before the first stage of the inclusion of new digital terrestrial television in the DVB-T2 / HEVC standard. The transmission of information on this topic is especially important via television, while other channels are only supportive. Fortunately, the intensification of the campaign is noticeable. Of course, the readiness of stores to meet the growing demand for televisions is of course very important.
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