Viewers Find out If They're Ready for DTV

December 18, 2008 1:08:11 AM PST
The switch from analog to digital television is exactly two months away -- and ABC-30 conducted a test Wednesday to see if you're ready. For five minutes, the station sent out two signals -- one on our digital channel and one on our analog channel.And we took plenty of calls from people wondering what was going on. The government is forcing TV stations to drop their analog signals on Feb. 17, leaving only the digital signal -- with its brighter colors and sharper pictures -- or nothing if you're not ready.

Leona Nan got the message saying her TV isn't ready for when the switch happens. At 90 years old, she's seen a lot of upgrades in the ways we're entertained -- from radio, to black and white TV, to the earliest versions of color TV. "With tubes," she said. "You had to replace tubes if your tubes went out or a tube went out, you didn't have a picture."

She never upgraded to cable or satellite TV, and like most TVs made before 2006, hers is not digital. That means she needs a digital converter box to get any signal at all after the switch in February.

Installation is pretty easy: After the "not ready" message popped up, we got to work. We opened the box, grabbed the converter, connected all the cables, found the right spot on the menu, and let the box find digital channels -- all in time to watch the very beginning of "Jeopardy."

Nan says she learned an important lesson from the test. "If I want to watch television, I better get that digital box," she said while laughing.

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