TVNZ does only broadcast in 4:3 at the moment except for Shortland Street which is shot and broadcast in 15:9. To my knowledge there is no other major broadcaster or programme that uses 15:9. Strange. Don't get me wrong, anything that brings us closer to true 16:9 is good but why 15:9 which seems to have been invented for Shortland Street? Have you ever watched Shortland Street and seen the format 'jump' partway through the programme as TV2 Transmission Control suddenly remembers to make the switchfrom 4:3 to 15:9? This also sometimes happens in reverse during the following programme or more often during the commercials when they switch back.
The logical middle ground for now is the 'compromise' 14:9 option that has been used for a number of years by the BBC and many other international broadcasters. This is where a show is filmed using true 16:9 anamorphic cameras but all of the people / events / featured items in the frame is kept within a narrower 14:9 window. This is called shooting 14:9 Action Safe. Then when the programme goes into post production the graphics / titles / keys / credits and any other additions on screen are kept within the basic 4:3 window. This is called 4:3 Graphic Safe. The programme is then broadcast in 14:9. Other 4:3 shows are still broadcast in 4:3.
What this means to the viewer is that anyone viewing on a widescreen capable TV (there really are plenty of those out there and growing all the time) can see the better 14:9 picture. Those viewing on a 4:3 TV will still see the vast majority of the picture without losing any of the graphic elements that inform us of people names / subtitles / translations etc. Shows that have been shot in 4:3 (such as many of the dreadful US reality imports) are still broadcast in 4:3 so no letterboxing is necessary.
One day we will switch to Digital HD Anamorphic Widescreen. Yes, that day could well be 15 years away but lets move with the times on the way. Telecom has at last been hobbled for the good of the consumer and the industry. Don't just accept TVNZ's lazy attitude and excuses.