FCC surveys DTV converter boxes

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued a consumer advisory on the features offered by 32 digital-to-analog converter boxes.

On Feb. 17, 2009, federal law requires that all full-power television broadcast stations stop broadcasting in analog format and broadcast only in digital format. If you receive only free over-the-air television programming, you will lose your signal if you have an analog TV. Converter boxes can be used with analog televisions to receive digital signals broadcast for free over-the-air to your antenna. (Analog televisions will in most cases be older models. Since March 1, 2007, all television receivers shipped in interstate commerce or imported into the United States must contain a digital tuner.)

All the converter boxes surveyed by the FCC are certified under the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) converter box coupon program and are eligible for purchase using a coupon issued by the NTIA. These coupons worth $40 can be applied towards the purchase of converter boxes, which generally are priced at $40 to $80. Click here to visit NTIA's website or call 888-388-2009 for information on how to request up to two coupons per household.

These 32 converter boxes surveyed by the FCC can be purchased at retailers. The FCC report includes features of particular interest to the disabilities community, as recommended by the Commission’s Consumer Advisory Committee.

The advisory will be updated as more NTIA-approved boxes become available at retail stores and online.

Go to the FCC consumer advisory comparing the features of digital-to-analog converter boxes.




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