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Survey: Over the Air TV Signals - Are They Still Needed?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
On the last two shows we discussed an initiative by the Consumer Electronics Association to eliminate over the air (OTA) broadcasts of television signals. In CEAs findings they stated that only 8% of the US population receives their signals through the air. We feel that this number is artifically stated as low. The survey polled 1,256 adults but it did not say where the respondants were located. If the survey was done in rural communities that number may be as high as 25%.

Regardless, we put together a quick survey (Link to Survey) to see which side our listeners/readers come down on the subject. We'll dicuss the results on Friday's show.

Thanks and have a great weekend!
Ara
post #2 of 29
My OTA channels don't come in very well. Choppy at best.
post #3 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by stepyourgameup View Post

My OTA channels don't come in very well. Choppy at best.

Probably just need a better or bigger antenna or maybe an amplifier... check out http://www.antennaweb.org.

I've been using OTA exclusively for more than 15 years now, and I can't understand why so many people are willing to pay the outrageous prices for so many un-watched stations and for inferior quality to boot. I've never seen a cable or satellite broadcast with better video quality than the best of my OTA stations. My parents are paying more than $70 a month (that's $900 a year) for Time Warner's basic + standard package. They have no DVR service and no HD programming. I hooked up an antenna for them years ago, so at least they can get HD on the local stations.

I will only ever be interested in cable or satellite if the providers offer reasonable pricing on a "cafeteria-style" package and the quality matches OTA.
post #4 of 29
Pretty much all the industry observers I'm aware of believe the CEA survey is inaccurate. It appears they are trying to align themselves with the cell industry and kiss the local broadcasters off.
post #5 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by stash64 View Post

Probably just need a better or bigger antenna or maybe an amplifier... check out http://www.antennaweb.org.

And don't forget to check the AVS HDTV Technical & Locals forums, for expert assistance in receiving over-the-air free Digital TV.
post #6 of 29
The only reason I got cable is that reception where I live is poor. Otherwise, I probably wouldn't have it. whether I go back to OTA TV at some point, I will NOT be doing internet TV; no interest.
post #7 of 29
If you want local sports, though, you need cable or dish, at least in Boston area.
post #8 of 29
In my area, the OTA stations broadcast in HD at 19.2Mbps which is consistenly better than my DirecTV broadcasts. Also the OTA does not suffer from signal loss during storms. I use both, but OTA is my primary source for local network programming.

All of my display devices have built-in ATSC tuners and so I do not need boxes everywhere.
post #9 of 29
About six months ago I cut the cable/satellite cord completely and haven't looked back. Where I live I get great OTA reception (16 Channels total: 5 HD), throw in websites, hulu, netflix, and the various "sources" online for sport programming I feel like I don't think miss a thing.
post #10 of 29
I live in LA, with FOX, CBS, NBC, and KTLA antennas in a 15mi radius =). I use a coax cable cut in half for an "antenna" connected to my TV and I get 30+ channels, about 10 in HD. Keep OTA signals please
post #11 of 29
Why should the CEA care if their customers use OTA since tuners and antennas fall under the category "Consumer Electronics". I wonder how much funding the satellite/cable companies give to the CEA.

On a personal note I use OTA exclusively since I cut the cord over one year ago. I also use Netflix, Amazon VOD and Hulu so I don't miss much.
post #12 of 29
I know of a few people who use OTA since they can't afford satellite or cable. They all got hit and miss reception until I installed an amplified antenna from monoprice. Now they all get excellent reception and all the channels available.

I was quite impressed with the selection of channels with the move to digital broadcast.

OTA is still needed and will likely remain that way for quite some time.
post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by futurecode View Post

About six months ago I cut the cable/satellite cord completely and haven't looked back...........I don't think miss a thing.

Ditto. 200 channels of crap vs. 10 channels of crap for free. I'm spending more time playing with power tools, watching movies, and hanging out with my hounds. Works for me.
post #14 of 29
my tv in the garage is OTA only, I am out there most of the day on weekends and that thing is usually on. In the house I watch OTA whenever I want to watch local news or any of the major networks (NBC/CBS/ABC/KTLA/WB/etc...)

If they stop transmitting they will only be hurting themselves....I will not pay $$ to get those stations on DirecTV.
post #15 of 29
I subscribe to Comcast, but if they keep raising their rates at the current pace, I'm not sure how much longer I can justify it.
Leave OTA alone. I'm worn out with changes that benefit folks with money.
OTA works just fine for me, and I enjoy several of the sub-channels. Three Stooges tonight on 59-2, Stanley Cup on 13-1 here in Bloomington Indiana.
post #16 of 29
Netflix to your iphone or whatever gadget is the way of future... sounds like the companies are getting greedy and pulling an apple, forcing people to buy overpriced crap for virtually no gain.

People are going to wise up to the fact that internet and TV come through on the same line, paying double your internet bill for shows that you wont watch 90% of is a total waste when you can pay a nominal monthly fee to access whatever you do want to watch through the internet.
post #17 of 29
I love cable and will never part with it. OTA is useless for me and they could shut off the signal tomorrow for all I care.

The sports I love are on cable, cable is a news junkie paradise, there are a ton of shows that capture my interest. I suppose if I had few interests OTA might be enough, but my family loves the programming cable provides.
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxfj View Post

I know of a few people who use OTA since they can't afford satellite or cable. They all got hit and miss reception until I installed an amplified antenna from monoprice. Now they all get excellent reception and all the channels available.

I was quite impressed with the selection of channels with the move to digital broadcast.

OTA is still needed and will likely remain that way for quite some time.

link please
post #19 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

....I suppose if I had few interests....

post #20 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

I suppose if I had few interests OTA might be enough, but my family loves the programming cable provides.

Yeah... what would a modern family do these days if they only had a dozen or so choices on TV... and no Disney Channel ?
post #21 of 29
OTA signals is just too unreliable for me.
Video quality is choppy at best.
I probably won't part with my cable very soon as I am still pretty comfortable with standard TV programming.
Without a stop to net neutrality and ISP data caps, online video just won't get enough momentum to replace cable.
post #22 of 29
I wish I could cut the cord to save $, but my wife would divorce me if I did. She hates DTV (pictures are too sharp for her). We subscribe to analog cable and we have an antenna for the local DTV stations. She will only watch a local station OTA if she's recording a program on the VCR via cable. I ask her what's she's going to do when the CATV company discontinues analog. She hasn't answered yet. At home I watch TV OTA when I can.

I am a commercial driver; I have a TV/VCR with a DTV converter I watch during my off time when I'm away from home. Most areas I have no problem with reception in my truck. I depend on OTA TV!
post #23 of 29
Wow, she must really hate the new 4k theaters.
post #24 of 29
No matter how "few" people watch OTA, the percentages (ratio) approach 100% when there's a disaster, and the power is out to cell sites, cable tv power supplies, and most people's AC-powered satellite receivers.

But, of course, disasters are becoming so infrequent lately .
post #25 of 29
I have watched many times here in Missouri the over the air warnings for things such as tornadoes (Joplin MO as an example). If satellite no longer functions because of the thick cloud deck I tune to OTA when Im down in the basement during one of the more recent frequent storms. OTA serves its public safety function as well.
post #26 of 29
Wow, I'm surprised to see so many folks coming down hard on the side of OTA TV. While I use it for my locals and think it's great to have, really isn't this bandwidth better used by society for mobile bandwidth? TV is available to the vast majority of consumers through cable or satellite, whereas there's no other alternative I know of for expanding the mobile spectrum.
post #27 of 29
I know lots of people that only get OTA TV. I believe many more people have at least one TV set up for OTA only. This later number probably went down with digital because many never bothered to get converter boxes for the guest room OTA TV. I did get one for the guest room TV however. In any case it is those that can't afford cable/satellite that use OTA. These people would be disenfranchised without OTA.

Rick R
post #28 of 29
Is over the air TV needed?

Is TV of any kind needed? My Dad thought TV was an intrusion. He especially disliked salespersons walking into his house via TV. I grew up without TV and can imagine a return to a simpler life.
post #29 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by emf View Post

Is over the air TV needed?

Is TV of any kind needed? My Dad thought TV was an intrusion. He especially disliked salespersons walking into his house via TV. I grew up without TV and can imagine a return to a simpler life.

Well thank god it's not you or your dads' decision to make, currently unemployed I can't afford sat. or cable, but will probably never go back to either one.
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