Don't Throw Out Those Rabbit Ear Antennas

May/June 2008
A version of this article appears in the May/June 2008 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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May 01, 2008
As of February 17, 2009, when all the major TV broadcasters will begin to transmit using a digital signal, no one with an analog, rabbit-eared television set will be able to get anything without a digital-to-analog converter box. The switch from analog broadcast to digital has something to do with leaving the airwaves free for police and emergency responder radios, and also the fact that already, millions of digital TVs have been sold, bringing better-quality television to millions of people. If you have a digital TV, or pay for cable or satellite TV service, you’re good—you don’t have to do anything. But if you have an old analog set, you’ll need to buy a converter box costing about $50. But don’t fret, because your government has come to the rescue—with coupons worth $40. Between January 1, 2008, and March 31, 2009, all U.S. households will be able to request up to two coupons, worth $40 each, for the purchase of eligible digital-to-analog converter boxes. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) is administering the coupon program and has a list of eligible converter boxes as well as information about getting coupons. The entry of perhaps millions ...

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