According to the manufacturer which commissioned the survey, LG, the majority of households in the UK want to experience HD but at least 60% don't have enough understanding of the technology to buy the right equipment.
It also suggests that 25% of the population don't understand what high definition is while 80% of people aren't aware of the difference between HD Ready 1080p and HD Ready.
Regional differences are also pinpointed. Yorkshire and Humberside have the lowest understanding of what HD is, with 30% of people surveyed believing that owning a television with an HD Ready logo or a digital box would automatically make all content high definition.
East Anglia has the highest HD adoption rate with 50% of people now owning an HD TV. Scotland, on 27%, has the lowest.
LG Electronics digital display marketing manager George Mead believes that while interest in HD is growing, an education drive is required to push through mass adoption.
“It's key for us to translate this growth into relevant and tangible consumer experiences and the only way this will succeed is through education and by keeping the tech jargon simple and clear,” he said.
The survey results are based on the telephone responses of 1,000 people over the age of 16 in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The research was carried out this month.
An Ofcom report in 2007 said that consumer confusion was the result of incorrect information from retailers.