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June DTV Transition Would Hurt Qualcomm Most

As Congress contemplates broadband access as part of President-elect Barack Obama’s economic recovery plan, Jay Rockefeller, chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, has filed a bill that would push back the transition from analog to digital signals for television broadcasters from Feb. 18 until June 12, 2009. A four-month delay won’t be terribly detrimental to AT&T’s (s t) plans to deploy LTE, but will likely cause problems for Verizon (s VZ), Cox Communications and Qualcomm (s qcom), as we detailed in a story earlier this week. With its plans to turn on mobile television services in 100 markets on Feb. 18, Qualcomm will face an ever longer wait for its nationwide MediaFLO network.

Congress is likely to condone such a wait, even as industry players stew, because to date some people have been unable to cash in on a coupon program that takes $40 off the cost of a converter box that enables older analog televisions to receive the digital signals. Hopefully Congress will allocate funding for more coupons and these people will rise up from their couches and pick up their boxes. Because while television is important, wireless innovations such as white spaces and LTE, which are being kept on hold while we wait for this conversion, represent the future. And that future can’t get here soon enough.

22 Responses to “June DTV Transition Would Hurt Qualcomm Most”

  1. I dont understand why people are making this so difficult. Its VERY simple. If you have a antenna and dont have a HDTV, then you need a digital converter. What is soooooo hard about that. My god it is soo simple.

  2. You seem confused about the date of the switch to digital television: it’s February 17, 2009, not February 18, 2009. Maybe you should concentrate on the facts, which have been publicized ad nauseum for a long time and are even available on the web. Imagine that!

  3. anonny55

    they should not delay the transition, just constantly display on the analog channels that this signal will soon stop working – even on commercials – if people dont get the point, then they can do without.

  4. Here is a thought. Why don’t the govt allow everyone to write off the cost of the box on the taxes that everyone is getting ready to do. Oh wait that would make to much sense. Nevermind I forgot the govt is stupid and still lives and operates in the 50’s

  5. After talkin with some Qualcom folks at CES it was my impression that they are providing Verizon as well as AT&T with their mobile tv solutions via MediaFlo.., or Flo as they seem to be marketing it to consumers. Seems like it will effect all not just Verizon and Cox

  6. Here’s a thought, maybe if the government just let the the transition happen, people will finally get it.

    Unless they assume the masses will riot because they can’t get their TV.

    More a social commentary on our society than something that is the furthest thing from important.