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TVs

Not just HD Ready, but Ready for HD

If you've recently spent all your pocket money on an HD Ready screen, you'll want to watch some hi-def stuff on it -- if you only have Freeview, that's going to be a problem

Here at Crave we love Freeview. It's a fantastic service that offers a bunch of decent channels (and bid-up tv) for nothing but the cost of the box and a TV licence. But we can still see room for improvement. The quality isn't really up to the standard we'd expect for an HD Ready era. This is especially relevant when you're watching on a flat panel.

So what do we do? Well, an organisation called HDforAll wants to get the government and Ofcom, the communications regulator, to make provision for high-definition TV on Freeview. At the moment there's something of a capacity problem on Freeview, which means hi-def isn't practical. With the analogue switch-off looming, it's entirely possible the bandwidth released could be used for high-definition TV. HDforAll's aim is to make sure the spectrum doesn't just end up being sold to the highest bidder -- probably the mobile phone companies -- something which could easily scupper any HD via Freeview. And let's be honest, do we need any more mobile phone services clogging up the airwaves?

We like the HDforALL campaign for a few reasons -- firstly, we want and deserve high-definition television in the UK. Secondly, it's backed by the main broadcasters, such as the BBC and ITV, as well as several equipment manufacturers, including Sony and Toshiba, so it's not just some crazy people starting yet another Internet petition.

Crave hopes someone is listening. HD is here to stay, and we don't see why we should have to sell our soul to Murdoch or Branson to get it. -Ian Morris