Australians choose Digital Future with DVB-T

Geneva, 18 June 1998 – The Australian Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting (DTTB) Selection Panel, charged with making the key recommendation on Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting (DTTB) to the Australian Government, has chosen DVB-T.

The full text of the Australian announcement

This recommendation is the most significant step in the entire decision making process, the final responsibility for which rests with the Australian Ministry of Communications. Their final announcement is expected later this year. No challenges to this recommendation are foreseen.

Since November 1996, Australia has been evaluating available DTTB standards. In-depth technical trials were carried out by the Government Communications Laboratory of the two main contenders, namely the American ATSC DTV system and the internationally developed DVB system, DVB-T.

The trials tested the primary aspects of DTTB which are supported by both systems, and did not feature tests of indoor portable set top antenna reception and mobile television, which DVB-T is unique in being able to address. DVB-T has been demonstrated to be able to receive television on the move (at speeds up to 275 km/h), and is capable of delivering many different kinds of service, from HDTV to standard definition (SDTV), to multimedia content and interactive services.

Though the primary applications for DTTB are not mobile TV, cross-media interoperability and multimedia content delivery, the added value these represent to broadcasters and other content providers entering an age of convergence is highly significant. These features of DVB make the Australian choice even more valid.

In a recent announcement by the Australian Government, HDTV has been selected as the primary application of DTTB in Australia. One important reason for the choice of DVB-T is that DVB manufacturers have guaranteed that equipment for both broadcasters and consumers will be on the shelves in time for the launch of HDTV services in Australia in 2001.

Theo Peek, chairman of the DVB Project, said:

"Quite naturally, we are delighted to be the preferred technology platform for Australia's digital broadcasting future. This decision is also a very prominent milestone in the worldwide transition to digital. Australia is the first country to subject both available technologies to such rigorous competitive testing and DVB has won. This is an important endorsement of DVB for broadcasters and regulators in all countries outside Europe and America to consider. "


The Digital Video Broadcasting Project (DVB) is a consortium of over 230 broadcasters, manufacturers, network operators and regulatory bodies in more than 30 countries worldwide, committed to designing a global standard for the delivery of digital television. Numerous broadcast services using DVB standards are now operational, in Europe, North and South America, Africa, Asia, and Australasia.