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Bogus digital TV sellers hit householders for up to €350

HOUSEHOLDERS have been warned about door-to-door sales people claiming to represent the new free-to-air digital TV service Saorview and charging €350 to install new equipment.

Around 340,000 householders currently receiving their TV signal through aerials will have to install new technology to access the digital service from 2012. But those who have to make the switch can buy the necessary equipment for as little as €59.

Now householders have been reporting sales people claiming to be from Saorview offering to carry out the work for €350.

A salesman calling to homes in north Co Dublin claimed to be from Saorview and offered to upgrade one home's TV service to accept the new digital service from RTE by installing a satellite dish, new set-top box and new wiring.

A price of €349 was quoted. However, the house in question already had a satellite dish and did not need new equipment to receive Saorview.

A spokeswoman for Saorview said neither it, nor RTE, had commissioned or endorsed any door-to-door sales activities.

The state broadcaster is switching off the analogue signal at the end of next year.

Cable and satellite customers won't be affected, but there are still swathes of the country where viewers are reliant on the analogue signal -- especially in rural areas.

Customers will need either a digital set-top box hooked up to their existing TV, or else a modern TV with a built-in digital receiver.

They will face costs of between €60 and €200, the spokeswoman for RTE said.

Irish Independent