Barbara Anthony, Undersecretary of the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation
There is just one day left to make sure you are ready for the switch to digital television, a change that will affect thousands of television viewers in Massachusetts if they haven’t upgraded their television.
If you have cable or a digital-ready television, you don’t have to make any changes. But if you have a television that is not digital-ready, and use rabbit ears or an aerial antenna to get over-the-air broadcasts, you need to make a few changes between now and Friday. Digital Television will give the consumer better picture quality and surround sound, more programming choices, multicasting and closed captioning, but more importantly it will free up airwaves for use by emergency responders.
The federal government has set a deadline for Friday, June 12, for all full-power stations to broadcast in a digital format. You can get a converter box through a number of outlets, and you can get a coupon from the federal government to subsidize the cost of the box.
If you watch Boston-based stations, you haven’t seen a change, but you will by Saturday morning. All of Boston’s major television stations plan on switching to digital broadcasting on Friday. If you watch stations in the Providence or Springfield markets, they have already made the switch.
The deadline has been promoted for months on local television stations, and this week stories in print media have been popping up regularly, including in The Boston Globe, Telegram & Gazette, The Eagle-Tribune, and Boston Herald.
There is plenty of information for you to learn more about the switch to digital television, and what you need to do to be prepared. For answers to frequently asked questions about the transition, click here. For more information from the federal government and the FCC, you can click here. For more information on the converter box and to apply for a coupon, click here.
Time is running out on making your transition to digital television. Make sure you take care of your television today.