Congress has mandated that full-power TV stations switch from analog to digital transmissions no later than June 12, 2009. Check with your local broadcaster for details. The National Telecommunications & Information Administration provides the following information about the transition.
Watching TV after the Digital Transition:
DTV Converter Box Coupon Program:
- If you use cable or a satellite service - or have a digital (ATSC) television – a converter box is not
necessary to continue receiving your current programming choices on those TV’s.
- If you receive over-the-air television broadcasts and have an analog television, a converter box will be
needed to watch television programming. These digital-to-analog converter boxes will allow existing analog
televisions to display the available digital television signal.
- The NTIA has announced that all households in the United States, not just those relying on over-the-air
television, are eligible for the DTV Converter Box Coupon Program while the initial funds of $990 million are
available. There is currently a waiting list pending Congress making additional coupon funds available. Consumers are encouraged to apply and get on that list.
- Each coupon will be worth $40 towards the purchase of an eligible converter box from a certified consumer electronics dealer. American TV has been certified as one of these dealers and is now accepting the coupons at all stores. Coupons have no cash value, cannot be resold and are not reedemable online.
- Upon request and if federal funds are still available, a maximum of up to two coupons will be sent to households via the United States
Postal Service and will expire three months after they are mailed.
- Coupons will be electronically trackable and uniquely numbered, similar to gift cards, so transactions
will be verified at the point of sale. Only one coupon can be redeemed per converter box.
www.dtvtransition.org - a one-stop clearinghouse of consumer information on the transition.
www.dtv.gov - government site offering comprehensive resources.
www.ntia.doc.gov - NTIA’s web site providing information about the administration of the Converter Box Coupon program.
For more information about the converter box coupon program contact:
U.S. Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration
1401 Constitution Avenue, NW Room 4812
Washington, D.C. 20230