What's an IDTV then? Well, it stands for Integrated Digital TV, and it means a television that has an inbuilt digital decoder so that it can receive the digital terrestrial television transmission without requiring a separate set top box. (Just to confuse you, there is also the acronym, iDTV, which stands for interactive digital television, and this refers to the interactive services such as additional news reports, weather maps or viewer voting, that have become available with the advent of digital TV.) Anyway, if you are thinking of buying a new television, an Integrated Digital TV is certainly worth your consideration.
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Update 6th May 2005! Humax has launched a new combined LCD widescreen TV/PVR product. Find out more with our Humax LGB-32TPVR Review.
It will be described as an Integrated Digital TV, IDTV or possibly
a Freeview TV. In the features you should check it
has a digital terrestrial TV receiver. You can also look for the DVB
or Freeview logos:
To receive Freeview digital TV, you could just buy a Freeview box and connect it to your existing TV. However, the digital TV transmission can broadcast a true widescreen picture, so you will only benefit from this if you have a 16x9 format widescreen TV, as opposed to older TVs which are 4x3 format. Thus one reason why a new IDTV is recommended, is because it will usually be a 16x9 widescreen TV.
Note, whilst an Integrated Digital TV will be able to receive the Digital Terrestrial Television signal (i.e. Freeview), it would still require a separate set top box to receive either digital satellite or digital cable.
The UK switchover to digital TV only will be completed in 2012. See this Digital TV information site for more details.
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