APTS Study Says Analog Viewers Not Ready For DTV

A study commissioned by the Association of Public Television Stations has come to the conclusion that viewers are not ready for the February 17, 2009 switch to all digital broadcasting. The blame is placed on the government for a severely underfunded consumer DTV education campaign.

The APTS cites as evidence the lack of a significant decrease in analog-only households over the past three years, from 22.6 million to 22.5 million, of which only 7 percent own digital TVs.

The group claims that without immediate action, those 22 million over-the-air analog homes will not move fast enough to switch to digital TV, cable, or satellite.

Some members of congress have brought up the lack of funding and the slow pace of the education effort, and pushed the FCC for more information on its plan. They would like the education campaign to start now, while some groups—including broadcasters—think the campaign shouldn’t start until 2008.