DTV Switch Is On: Millions To Lose Analog Signals - InformationWeek
Healthcare // Analytics
09:51 AM
Ransomware: Latest Developments & How to Defend Against Them
Nov 01, 2017
Ransomware is one of the fastest growing types of malware, and new breeds that escalate quickly ar ...Read More>>

DTV Switch Is On: Millions To Lose Analog Signals

Virtually all TV stations are expected to have completed the switch to broadcasting digital television signals by Saturday. Three million U.S. homes are estimated to be unprepared.

More than 1,000 broadcast television stations across the nation began switching their transmission from analog to digital Friday while millions of Americans wait to see what effect the move will have on their TV sets.

With Nielsen's latest survey reporting that more than 3 million U.S. homes are unprepared for the switch to DTV, there are likely to be widespread complaints. A new survey sponsored by Harris, however, indicates that over-the-air reception for many Americans will improve TV reception, dramatically causing many to drop fee-based cable and satellite services.

Harris said the digital broadcast technology -- called Advanced Television Systems Committee technology -- improves TV picture quality by allocating more bandwidth to over-the-air HDTV. "The survey," said Harris of the 1,000-respondent poll, "found that a majority of people -- 69% -- feel the nationwide DTV transition will be good for them and their families. Fifty-five percent said they are somewhat or very likely to switch to antennas to receive free, over-the-air, high-definition TV signals (HDTV), versus subscribing to cable or satellite subscriptions."

In the meantime, the first encounter many Americans will have with DTV will be blank screens or fuzzy pictures. Since broadcast stations can switch their transmissions on their own schedules, some Americans will notice the change earlier than others.

Virtually all stations are expected to have completed the switch by Saturday morning. In addition to hundreds of its own employees, the FCC has enlisted thousands of volunteers ranging from firefighters to citizens groups to assist consumers in the switch.

RadioShack suggested that consumers rescan their converter boxes and digital televisions at least two times Saturday to ensure their reception operates effectively. Associates in RadioShack stores have been trained to assist consumers in the changeover. Converter boxes -- received by millions of Americans from the federal government -- are programmed to help consumers rescan through a setup menu on the converter box.

The FCC redesigned its DTV Web site, which includes a 15-page consumer guide to help consumers. The "DTV Made Easy" guide, written by Consumer Reports, can be downloaded or obtained by calling the FCC DTV help line, 888-CALL-FCC.

InformationWeek Analytics has published an independent analysis on increasing application performance. Download the report here (registration required).

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Digital Transformation Myths & Truths
Transformation is on every IT organization's to-do list, but effectively transforming IT means a major shift in technology as well as business models and culture. In this IT Trend Report, we examine some of the misconceptions of digital transformation and look at steps you can take to succeed technically and culturally.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll