Success of transition depends on converter box availability, says Rehr

NAB president and CEO David Rehr reminded the head of the Consumer Electronics Association on May 14 that the availability of digital-to-analog converter boxes by the beginning of next year is critical to the success of the DTV transition.

In a letter to CEA president and CEO Gary Shapiro, Rehr highlighted “the importance of industry commitments” to make the converters available and have them in stock at retail stores on Jan. 1, 2008.

“It is critical to our collective success that manufacturers build, and retailers have available for sale, digital-to-analog converter boxes by that date,” he said.

Not having the boxes built and on store shelves by Jan. 1 will cause “significant consumer confusion” and “could negatively impact the overall success of the transition.”

Rehr told Shapiro that the broadcast association is “willing to assist with NAB resources” to make certain converters are stocked by the beginning of next year.