Nielsen Says More Households Ready for DTV

Nielsen announced this week that the number of TV households unready for the DTV transition declined to less than 8 percent in September.

As of the end of October, 8.8 million out of an estimated 114.5 million households in the U.S. don’t have a DTV, converter box, cable or satellite service. This represents 7.7 percent of all households, down from 8.4 percent in September. As recently as May, 9.8 percent were “completely unready,” according to the media analysis firm.

Nielsen said 10.7 percent, or 15 million households were “partially unready” as of October. Those households have at least some digital service but also have additional TV sets that won’t be able to receive a digital signal. A portion of those sets, however, may be dedicated for other uses, such as VCR/DVD-only, or for gaming.

Approximately 12.4 of Hispanic households, which are more likely to rely exclusively on over the air broadcasts, are “completely unready,” compared to 7.1 percent of non-Hispanic households.

Nielsen’s DTV ready figures—which it has been compiling since May—are based on its National and local People Meter samples.