With the FCC-mandated analog-to-digital transition set for Feb. 17, 2009, an estimated 65 million Americans will experience some sort of impact to their existing television service next winter. However, according to a recent online survey from Bridgevine.com, a significant number of consumers are unprepared for the transition. In the recent survey of more than 1000 Bridgevine customers, 36% said they were not prepared for the digital transition and another 6% were completely unaware of the conversion.
“With a customer base that is generally quite savvy about digital services and related issues, we were surprised by the number of those people who are not prepared for the transition,” said Vinny Olmstead, CEO of Bridgevine. “The survey results clearly indicate a lapse in consumer education and strongly suggest that additional awareness initiatives around the switch to digital are needed for consumers nationwide.”
Also called the “DTV” transition or conversion, the move to all-digital broadcasts is expected to impact 65 million or more Americans according to National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimates. While many are touting the benefits of all-digital programming, this transition is not good news for the consumers it will impact, many of whom are not tech-savvy or are simply unaware if, or how, they will be affected. To prepare, consumers will need to navigate a number of key issues:
- Determining if a television is digital-ready
- Submitting for government-issued converter box coupons
- Choosing and connecting the right converter box
- Evaluating existing television service/ selecting new services
to Daily News