Wednesday, January 9, 2013
HD, 3D, LCD. These days TVs are bigger, better – and more complicated - than ever.
But for an old-fashioned few, nothing beats their trusty black and white set.
Astoundingly, 47 households in Romford still use monochrome tellies, according to figures released this week by TV Licensing - 46 years after colour transmissions began.
The determined viewers would have needed to have bought a suitable set-top box to continue to use their antiquated TVs after the digital switchover last year.
John Trenouth, a television and radio technology historian, said: “The numbers of black and white TV sets in regular use has fallen dramatically over the last few years, hastened by the fact that it’s now almost impossible to replace them.
“The continued use of black and white TV sets, despite the obstacles, is more likely to be driven by economics than by nostalgia.”
The cost of a black and white TV Licence remains frozen at £49 until the BBC Charter Review in 2016. A colour licence costs £145.50.
Mr Trenouth added: “For low-income households the black and white licence fee is an attractive alternative to the full colour fee. There will always be a small number of users who prefer monochrome images, don’t want to throw away a working piece of technology or collect old TV sets.”
The number of black and white licences has been steadily declining.
In 2000 212,000 were issued, but by 2003 that number had shrunk to 93,000 and in 2006 the number was less than 50,000.
This year, just 13,202 black and white licenses were in force across the UK.
Victoria Sykes, spokesman for TV Licensing in London and the South East, said: “It’s remarkable that with the digital switchover complete, 41 per cent of UK households owning HDTVs and Britons leading the world in accessing TV content over the internet more than 13,000 households still watch their favourite programmes on a black and white telly.”
Are you one of the 47 who still uses a black and white box? If so, please get in touch as we’d love to talk to you.
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