[opendtv] U.S. unveils DTV converter box plan

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2007 14:58:08 -0400

"The agency said it would identify eligible converter boxes that can be
sold by retailers. Those boxes must comply with technical specifications
included in the final rule."

I suppose these details are not available yet.

Apparently, cable and DBS subscribers are held to some sort of honor
code to not request coupons.

Bert

------------------------------------------------------
U.S. unveils DTV converter box plan

George Leopold
(03/12/2007 12:32 PM EDT)
URL: http://www.eetimes.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=197900199

WASHINGTON - U.S. households will be eligible to request two $40 coupons
beginning Jan. 1, 2008, for the purchase of digital TV converter boxes,
according to a DTV transition plan announced by the Bush administration
on Monday (March 12).

The coupon plan for purchasing digital-to-analog converters is part of
final rules for a $1.5 billion subsidy program issued by the Commerce
Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration
(NTIA). Congress initially appropriated $990 million for the program. If
initial funding runs out, another $510 million could be made available
if NTIA certifies to Congress that coupon requests exceeded the initial
amount.

The program is designed to ensure that households that do not receive
broadcast signals from cable or satellite services will be able to
continue receiving over-the-air broadcasts after the February 2009
transition to all-digital programming.

NTIA said consumers requesting coupons must "self-certify" to the agency
that they do not already subscribe to a cable or satellite provider.

Retailers will sell the converter boxes. NTIA said the coupons will be
distributed in a form of similar to gift cards so that each converter
box purchase can be verified at a retailer's sales terminal.

The agency said it would identify eligible converter boxes that can be
sold by retailers. Those boxes must comply with technical specifications
included in the final rule. Manufacturers will be required to submit
production boxes and test results to the Federal Communications
Commission for certification, NTIA said.

"With the coupon program and a successful analog-to-digital transition
involving the public, industry and government, the switch from analog to
digital television will be completed as planned," John Kneuer, assistant
secretary of commerce for communication and information, said in a
statement.

Some lawmakers complained that NTIA had been slow to issue the new rules
governing the converter box subsidy program.

All material on this site Copyright 2007 CMP Media LLC. All rights
reserved.
 
 
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