DTV Comcast rumor

C

Camplate

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At a home show a Comcast rep said when the DTV switch happens next February that Comcast will also switch over to a digital only signal. I argued and even pointed out on their website they said people with old analog TVs will not have to do anything if they have cable.

So was he being an idiot or will Comcast try to force everyone to rent a digital cable box?
 
Geronimo

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There is actually a requirement to have an analog tier till 2012. They may move some channels off of it but there has to be one.
 
Jim S.

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Supposedly, at least 20% of Comcast systems will be moving the entire expanded basic tier to digital by the end of this year, with more to follow. I'm unsure of whether it'll be in the clear or not. I heard something about Comcast contracting for a bunch of cheap converters (it almost sounded like they were supposed to be block converters, but can you actually do that economically with digital?!) but that could just be for the people who don't have QAM tuners. (On the other hand, the several expanded-basic channels that they've just finished moving to digital to make room for more digital carriers aren't in the clear, plus I don't trust corporations to ever do anything in the public interest.)

This also begs the question of what the hell they're going to use all that free bandwidth for. Certainly more HD channels, but what will they be doing til more HD channels actually show up? They'll probably waste it on VOD, plus I think there's something in the works to use several carrier frequencies at once for Internet -- although what exactly they need higher-speed Internet service for isn't exactly clear to me since they seem to frown on customers actually doing anything interesting with it.

For more information, go to broadbandreports.com and find the Comcast TV forum.
 
jegrant

jegrant

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I would like a free/cheap digital block downconverter as Comcast has proposed. But, even if I have to buy them (for $20-$40 each) I would rather do that than have to pay a monthly fee for each.
 
stevenl

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Yes it will need 4 channels for upstream alone! BHN is already offering the "cheap" converters charging 1$ a month for them. Because they have moved a bunch of channels to digital only with plans to do many more.
 
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1400squall

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There is actually a requirement to have an analog tier till 2012. They may move some channels off of it but there has to be one.

Actually the FCC has a law for cable providers that IF they continue to broadcast in analog after the transition to digital then they are required to carry local TV stations in both analog and digital formats.

A cable company can transition itself to a complete digital setup. Comcast is plaining to go all digital. They will provide customers with standard digital receiver for free for one year before applying the rental charge.

Comcast wants to launch more HD and digital channels, so if they eliminate analog completely they will have more room to do so. And most of their expanded lineup is in digital in some areas requiring them to get a box to receive the full lineup.

My cable provider Suddenlink will broadcast in both analog and digital.
 
raoul5788

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Just because a cable company is going all digital doesn't mean your analog tv won't work! It means you will have to get a digital set top box. That's all it means!
 
B

bidger`

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^Which means you'll need a box for every set in the house, which means Cable will lose an advantage it has had over satellite.
 
raoul5788

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^Which means you'll need a box for every set in the house, which means Cable will lose an advantage it has had over satellite.

True, although I imagine many cable customers have at least one box in their homes.
 

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