Gov’t Clearing DTV Coupon Waiting List, Millions Still Not Ready

dell takes a slice at apple with super thin latitude z dellz closed

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration has announced it has started work on clearing its waitlist of more than 4.1 million requests for $40 coupons to offset the cost of digital television converters. Although the United States has largely put off its digital television transition until June 12, 2009, millions of households that depend on over-the-air broadcasts still aren’t ready to receive DTV signals—meaning they’ll lose TV service once analog broadcasts cease.

The NTIA says it expects to work through the existing coupon waitlist in two to three weeks; the 4.1 milion requests represent more than 2.3 million households who aren’t ready for the DTV conversion. However, while the NTIA is shipping waitlisted coupons, it has not started accepting requests to issue replacement coupons to households whose coupons have expired. And, of course, the agency is urging coupon recipients to use them promptly.

Some government estimates indicate as many a 5 million s U.S. households aren’t ready for the digital TV transition, with vulnerable groups like the elderly and poor disproportionately represented in that number. Even some analog TV users who have obtained $40 coupons have been put off by the cost of DTV converters—while some converters do cost only around $40, many retailers are stocking $60 and $80 units because they offer higher profit margins. And even when some households get a DTV converter, they’re finding they need to reposition or replace existing television antennas.

Roughly a third of the 1,800 full-power television stations converted to DTV on the original transition date of February 17, 2009, although those stations only reach about 15 percent of U.S. households. The federal government received fewer calls than expected from those stations switching over to digital broadcasts, but still expects to handle more than 3 million calls about transitioning to digital television by June 12.

Emerging Tech

NASA’s space observatory will map the sky with unprecedented detail

NASA is preparing to launch a cutting-edge space observatory to create the most detailed map ever produced of the sky. Doing so will involve surveying hundreds of millions of galaxies. Here's how it plans to do it.
Web

Are you one of the billions who have watched these super-popular YouTube videos?

Viral videos can quickly garner millions upon millions of views, but even they fall well behind the view counts on the most watched YouTube videos ever. Those have been watched billions of times.
Home Theater

ATSC 3.0: The next-gen TV update explained

ATSC 3.0 is the next major update to the broadcast standard we use today. Will this be the second coming of free, over-the-air TV? We're here to explain everything about the new standard.
Cars

Ford F-150 recall: Fault could cause vehicle to downshift into first gear

Ford is recalling 1.48 million F-150 vehicles over a potential fault that could cause it to suddenly downshift into first gear. The automaker said it's currently aware of five accidents related to the issue.
Deals

Take a gander at the best deals on 4K TVs for February 2019

There's no doubt that a good 4K smart TV is the best way to take your home entertainment setup to the next level to enjoy all your favorite shows, movies, and games in glorious Ultra HD. We've got the best 4K TV deals right here.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Movies & TV

Stay inside this winter with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Legion'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best movies you’ll find on Hulu right now (February 2019)

From dramas to blockbusters, Hulu offers some great films to its subscribers. Check out the best movies on Hulu, whether you're into charming adventure tales or gruesome horror stories.
Home Theater

They were robbed! From Crowe to Pacino, 10 times Oscar voters got it wrong

With the 91st Oscars rapidly approaching, now is a fine time to look back at several Oscar-worthy performances that were completely ignored by the Academy, as well as others that were nominated and astoundingly denied the little naked…
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: Yesterday, Tolkien, Triple Frontier, and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. That's why we round up the best ones for you. This week, it's trailers for Yesterday, Tolkien, Aladdin, Frozen 2, and Triple Frontier.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: Deadpool 2, The Umbrella Academy, and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: Deadpool 2, The Umbrella Academy, Lorena, and more.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (February 2019)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.