October 15, 2008 by Chuck McKenney
Two months ago, CEA president Gary Shapiro told us the DTV transition was moving along just fine. However, the FCC has a different take on the situation.
“The transition will be messy ... but we will get through it,” said Robert McDowell, a member of the Federal Communications Commission.
For those who haven’t heard, effective February 17, analog signals will be turned off completely, and only digital broadcasts will be delivered to your TV set. Anyone with an older model set who uses an antenna to watch TV will need a converter box.
Despite the wave of educational marketing campaigns on TV and online, McDowell said broadcasters must do more to educate the public. (Really? Seems like I run across at least one ad every day.)
Glitches are likely because viewer needs will vary depending on location. In some markets, consumers might require new antennas for their converter boxes to work, McDowell claimed.
Electronic House recently reported on several “Holes in the DTV Transition,” which include confusion over converter box models and coupons, and networks who are jumping the gun and cutting off analog broadcasts now.
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