A new scheme to badge certain digital TV products as ‘easy to install’ for older people and people with disabilities has been launched this week by the independent research charity Ricability.
Ricability – the former research arm of the consumer body Which? – is running the project in association with Digital UK, the broadcaster- funded body charged with overseeing the switchover from analogue to digital TV signals across the UK between now and 2012.
The ‘Easy to install’ research programme will test a wide range of digital TV recorders, set-top receivers and interactive digital TV sets (iDTVs) to identify those which are easy to install and retune at home without specialist assistance.
Product elements evaluated include packaging, labelling and instructions; accessories supplied such as leads and batteries; the user interface including on-screen menus and remote controls; the ease of first-time installation and retuning; and customer support including helplines and websites.
Ricability has issued its first ‘Easy to install’ badges to six Freeview Playback Digital TV recorders following tests earlier this year ahead of the full project launch. The six are the Digihome DTR160; the Goodmans GHD1621F2; the Humax Duovisio PVR-9200TB; the Technika AEDTR160S7; the Topfield TF5810PVRt and the Wharfedale 160DTR. Summary and detailed test reports for the six can be found online at: fastlink.headstar.com/ric2 .
In May and June the charity will be testing and awarding further badges to a range of set top boxes and iDTVs. The scheme is for self-installed products but the chairty also notes that many satellite, cable and phone based services like Sky, Virgin and BT Vision will install equipment for users, and some electrical retailers will also install equipment at a cost.
NOTE: For a full report on the history and work of Ricability see: www.headstar.com/eablive/?p=182