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HDTV Magazine Articles Archive (March, 2005)

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Politics & Policy

On Completing the Transition and Recovering Spectrum

By Dale Cripps • Mar 18 2005, 3:41pm

The most hotly contested DTV topioc in Washington today is over the shut-off date for the analog spectrum.

The arguments for and against a "date certain" cut off are uppermost though not far behind is the approach using the 85% rule.

The most compelling argument for a "date certain" (2006 still most favored) is that it focuses the mind like nothing else can. The 85% rule is in and of itself not clear. Many take it to mean that when 85% of the TV households in a market can decode any digital signal the rule is satisfied. Others say that it should be satisfied only when 85% of the households can decode a digital over-the-air broadcast. Under either circumstance the life of an old analog receiver is extended while spectrum can b e returned to the FCC for auction.


Limping Or Leaping?

By Dale Cripps • Mar 11 2005, 4:17pm

Arlington, Va., March 10, 2005 - Three million Digital Cable Ready (DCR) sets will be sold factory-to-dealer in 2005, building on the installed base of more than one million sold last year, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) announced today. CEA also repeated its call for all industries to help promote digital television (DTV) and educate consumers about the transition.

"The DTV transition is booming with more than 16 million DTV units sold since introduction," said CEA President and CEO Gary Shapiro. "But while consumer education remains key to the successful completion of the transition, a few key educational efforts are completely missing. For instance, it's a no-brainer that broadcasters should be promoting DTV on their analog channels. Unbelievably, they are not. And cable - the industry that by law must create a competitive retail market for cable equipment - must join in promoting Digital Cable Ready sets and the requisite CableCARD. Beyond that, the CableCARD must be m ...


HDTV's Chief Competion is 480p

By Dale Cripps • Mar 10 2005, 10:01pm

It seems impossible to me that something as promising as VOOM would register so much difficulty with their High-definition centric launch. There are 12 million HDTV sets already sold and less than one third have any HDTV signal providing connections. The VOOM proposition is profitable to its operators with only 250,000 subscribers. Considering that they do offer the greater promise for HDTV, if you discount Rupert Murdoch's claim to have 150 "cable" like channels in HDTV delivered from DirecTV by year's end. But anyone with half a mind will tell you that there is not enough HDTV formatted programming in the can yet to accom0date so many channels. So, if you can receive VOOM, and you have your HDTV set's collecting standard TV signals, why not venture out there with VOOM? They can reach the threshold of profitability rather rapidly and then you have at least one more dedicated source for new HDTV programming when it becomes available. If DirecTV and DISH find that the digital sets being ...