digital TV transition
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digital TV transitionThe switch from analog to digital broadcasting by all TV stations in the U.S., which occurred at midnight June 12, 2009. In 1998, DTV debuted in major U.S. cities, and the FCC mandated that broadcasters switch to digital by 2006. The deadline was extended twice until it finally went into effect.
TVs that pick up analog signals with an antenna no longer work unless a digital converter box is used (see TV converter box). For more about the digital standards, see DTV and 700 MHz spectrum.
Cable and Satellite Good Until 2012
Subscribers to cable and satellite TV services are not affected by the switch. They are closed systems that send analog signals to their customer's TV sets and will continue to do so until 2012 by order of the FCC.
The U.S. government provided two $40 rebate coupons per household for purchasing converter boxes. The rebate ended on July 31, 2009.