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A new era in New Zealand broadcasting began on 1 March 2003 as TVNZ began to give effect to its Charter. For the previous 14 years, TVNZ had operated as a State Owned Enterprise with a purely commercial focus.

The TVNZ Bill split the TVNZ Group into a television company (TVNZ) and a new transmission company (Transmission Holdings Limited) from 31st December 2003. The legislation required TVNZ balance its commercial performance with a set of public broadcasting objectives, set out in the Charter.

In July 2011, the Government passed legislation which repealed the Charter. The amended Television New Zealand Act now specifies the functions of TVNZ are to be: "a successful television and digital media company providing a range of content and services on a choice of delivery platforms and maintain its commercial performance."

By the end of 2013, all analogue transmission of television in New Zealand will have been switched off and the whole country will receive digital television only, via satellite or a network of land-based transmitters.

Viewing habits are changing fast. Time-shifted viewing on PVRs (personal video recorders) is gaining momentum, and the dramatic increase in viewing on smart phones and small screens looks set to accelerate.

The old boundaries between internet and television, and large screens and small screens, are fast disappearing but TVNZ remains at the forefront of change, committed to maintaining the company’s position as one of the country’s most significant institutions.