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The Warsaw Voice » Business » April 23, 2008
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Digital TV in Demand
April 23, 2008 By A.R.    
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Despite burgeoning sales of state-of-the-art television sets, Poland remains one of the least developed countries in Europe in terms of "digitalization," according to a report by a Polish think-tank called the Globalization Institute.

The report, entitled Digital Poland and published in April, puts the number of digital TV sets sold in Poland last year at over 1.5 million. Polish consumers buy more HDTV sets than their counterparts in other countries in Europe. In Poland, HDTV sets account for 89 percent of total television sales, while the European average is 77 percent. However, what is characteristic of the Polish market is that state-of-the-art TV sets are used to watch broadcasts made in outdated analog technologies, the report says.

In evaluating the country's "digitalization," the Globalization Institute considered factors such as digital signal coverage and technical capabilities offered by various methods of digital transmission. Good results can be achieved by combining different technologies, such as terrestrial and satellite broadcasting, especially as the cost of satellite transmission is sometimes a mere 10 percent of that of terrestrial TV, the institute says.

"Nowadays, almost 99 percent of all digital channels in Europe are broadcast via satellite," said Tomasz Teluk, director of the Globalization Institute. "In most countries in Western Europe, digital satellite broadcasts cover between 70 and 85 percent of 'digital' households."

In a survey carried out by the TNS OBOP polling center for the Digital Poland research and education project, 78 percent of respondents said that public television should provide its viewers with access to digital TV. Eighty-seven percent said that customers who pay television license fees should be granted access to digital TV free of charge.
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