Wednesday, September 12, 2007

NEW INFO, Cable and the Transition

Yesterday the FCC passed rulings on how cable television must handle the transition to digital television, especially after 2/17/2009.

As noted in previous posts, cable subscribers with analog televisions could continue to get the programming of their local stations from cable providers. The real question was how. Early information suggested that cable companies could downconvert DTV signals to an analog format only at the subscribers television set. That also suggested that cable subscribers who currently do not have cable boxes would have to upgrade.

The ruling yesterday allows cable companies to downconvert DTV signals at the cable headend (for 3 years)...thus allowing them to continue to provide box-free service to analog subscribers. This is a plus for cable companies who were concerned that they would not have enough boxes to go around and is good for subscribers who did not want to upgrade to cable services requiring a box. For broadcasters the concern about cable companies only providing analog signals (downconverting the DTV signal and not providing the DTV signal) has been addressed. Cable companies must provide both analog & digital signals to customers. So those of you who have purchased HDTV sets can be assured you will get an HDTV picture from cable.

For more info:

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