osewalrus (osewalrus) wrote,

The DTV Transition and Y2K

Best Buy is dropping analog tuners. http://www.eetimes.com/rss/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=202403970&cid=RSSfeed_eetimes_newsRSS

In point of fact the FCC has been making it increasingly difficult to sell analog only tuners. Under a recent FCC Order, it requires big signs that say "Warning, this TV will stop working after February 19, 2009" (unless you do special stuff).

Having been involved in digital television transition issues since 1999, I keep forgetting that lots and lots of people still don't realize that we are switching off our existing analog broadcast system February 19, 2009. It reminds me a lot of the lead up to Y2K. I knew about Y2K stuff and Y2K prep for years, but most folks suddenly noticed it in the later half of 1999.

Most people I talk to seem pretty grumpy about the DTV transition. Me, I'm less sure. For one thing, it will free up some very useful spectrum. For another, the question of how you push forward on major infrastructure or embedded technology is damn hard. The government struggled between 1996 and 2005 to figure out a way to do t via market fores and voluntary transitions, then finally gave up and set a hard date because we needed the auction revenue.

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