What You Need to Know About the DTV Transition

Currently, many over-the-air stations are broadcasting in both analog and digital TV (DTV) formats. After February 17, 2009, full?power TV stations will broadcast only in digital. The DTV transition will affect those who watch free over-the-air television (through a rooftop antenna or ?rabbit ears?). If you watch over-the-air programs on an analog TV, you must take action before February 17, 2009.

You have three choices:

1) Connect your analog TV to a digital-to-analog converter box. Digital-to-analog converter boxes are in stores and have a one-time cost of $40-$70. To help you pay for the boxes, the U.S. Government is offering two $40 coupons per household. (Please note that these coupons will expire 90 days after mailing). For more information on the coupons, visit www.DTV2009.gov, or call 1-888-388-2009 (voice) or 1-877-530-2634 (TTY). Plus, you should not need a new antenna if you get good quality reception on analog channels 2-51 with your existing antenna.

2) Buy a digital television (a TV with a built-in digital tuner). You do not need a High Definition TV (HDTV) to watch digital broadcast television. You only need a digital TV (or an analog TV connected to a digital-to-analog converter box). Plus, you should not need a new antenna if you get good quality reception on analog channels 2-51 with your existing antenna.

3) Subscribe to a paid TV service. If your TV set receives local broadcast stations through a paid provider such as cable or satellite TV, it is already prepared for the DTV transition. Cable companies are not required to transition or switch any of their channels to digital. However, if you have an analog TV that does not receive local broadcast stations through your paid provider, you will need a digital-to-analog converter box to watch digital broadcasts on that TV.

For More Information:
1-888-CALL-FCC (Voice)
DTV.gov
1-888-TELL-FCC (TTY)