Originally Posted by mgpt6
Comcast would want to keep happy the customers that pay $200 or so a month with HD and Triple play than those that pay $10 amonth for limited basic cable with no box of any kind. Perhaps , a middle road would be to keep NBC,CBS, FOX, ABC and PBS in analog for awhile longer and put the rest of limited basic in digital only.
Hey now, no blaming us cheapskates!-) Actually, broadcast basic costs $20/month ($19.50 plus your local taxes and fees) nowadays.
In fact Comcast are doing exactly as you say, for example WENH (PBS-11) and WMZY (MyTV-50) moved off analog in 2010 and now require digital TV tuner. Worse, they only transmit SD instead of the HD you get OTA, unless you rent a set-top box! They're making out like it's a bargain, $8.70/month but Basic subscribers can get it for $2.50/month, woowhee. But who wants a !@#$%ing STB when I have a perfectly good QAM tuner in my TV? It *seems* like intentional punishment for people who won't buy their HD tier: they could use less bandwidth putting broadcast in digital, and in HD -- once -- and instead rent standard analog converter boxes to any holdouts! But in *fact* they just want to sell more movies and VoD that they stand a chance of attracting from STB holders. (They could even *give* analog converters away instead of renting, if there's some franchise pricing agreement they must still uphold. And the rates for all basic subscribers would go up a few pennies on top of 2010's (already 18%!) price increase. But the issue really is attempting to garner additional profit from cheapskates by dangling premium content in front of them with the digital STBs.) Whatever, they're chasing the low-end away, too.
Anyway, end of rant and my actual point that got lost in there is: They do not even have the excuse you so-generously postulated for them.