Freeview is the second digital TV system attempted by the government. The first, in 2000, cost NZ$6.8 million.
The government will pay up to NZ$25 million and provide free radio spectrum, estimated to be worth up to NZ$10 million during the transition to digital, the companies involved will pay the remaining $50 million. It will cost Alt TV NZ$600,000 a year to broadcast on Freeview, Canterbury TV estimates it will need to pay NZ$1 million a year if it joins Freeview. The government claims a NZ$230 million benefit to the economy.
Freeview may turn into for-profit after the analogue switch off.