WSJ Says Millennials Unaware of Antennas and OTA TV - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 08:49 AM - Thread Starter
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WSJ Says Millennials Unaware of Antennas and OTA TV

Are millennials clueless about TV's having OTA reception capability? Maybe the WSJ was engaging in a bit of click-bait, but the story itself is germane to our times. I added a bit of snark and spice to my own post, to keep with the theme here.

Anyhow, the crux of it appears to be that antenna sales are increasing, which coincides with the recent uptick in cord-cutting (which now is really about just ending onerous cable and satellite contracts).

Click here to read more: WSJ: Millennials Unaware of Antennas and Free OTA TV
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post #2 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 09:17 AM
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I purchased an OTA receiver upgrade card and an inexpensive antenna for my Dish DVR box, primarily because it's limited to 2-tuners for satellite recording but with the OTA card I can record an additional 2 OTA channels at the same time.

However, as I've pretty much written off most TV shows on the major networks, and the cable channels that I record programming on typically repeat the episode a couple hours after the initial airing (so I can avoid scheduling conflicts), I haven't had to use it in a while.

The OTA recordings do look better than the sat recordings, but they also take up massively more space on the DVR, and running out of space is always a challenge.

If I were to cut the cord, which is an idea I'm always tempted by, I might want to get a better antenna to get more OTA channels and more solid reception, but I'd also need to find some sort of DVR that can inegrate with a program guide as I never watch anything live as it airs.
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post #3 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 09:27 AM
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I have OTA hooked up but literally the only time I have ever used it is for watching The OSCARs and the Super Bowl lol...

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post #4 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 09:44 AM
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TiVo Roamio with lifetime service and a good antenna are a great combination. Still, I'll vote for not including an antenna inside a flat panel TV. There are just too many obstacles to good reception that way for it to work for many people. Even if you could bypass an internal antenna and use your own, I'd prefer not to effectively pay for two.

One would hope that it would be easy enough to explain to young people that free tv is just like free radio, which I'm sure they're aware of even if they don't listen to it. Of course I also would hope that a high school physical science course would expose them to the idea of terrestrial broadcast...
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post #5 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:18 AM
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The problem with OTA, the digital signal is not as strong as the old analog signal. I live about 10 miles from all the local towers, and only on "good" days can I pick them up with an indoor antenna. Wind seems to be the biggest factor on whether or not I get a good signal. On windy days, I'm lucky to pull in 2 of the 5 locals and their sub channels. I'm not about to go up on my roof to install an antenna, or run cabling from my attic, through the walls to the basement cable junction box.
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post #6 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:25 AM
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Unfortunately I must echo the WSJ - I work in the Silicon Valley in a high-tech company filled with millennials possessing technical degrees and very few of them know how to use an antenna to see free OTA HD television or even that such a thing is possible. Most don't care since they stream and those that pay for cable or satellite grew up in homes that did the same thing and therefore don't realize that it's possible. I am a millennial/gen-xer that grew up with antennas and even though I have a very good one and high-quality cabling I still encounter inversion issues and other reception challenges. Because I don't care that much about TV I can tolerate these anomalies but many would find these issues unacceptable. I just can't justify paying Comcast what they want for the Economy package or even Basic Cable (local OTAs and some other channels) - all those fees add up. Besides I can pull in a lot of local content via OTA that Comcast does not re-broadcast (sub-channels, fringe stations, stations not in demand, etc.).
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post #7 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:32 AM
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here in New Jersey there is little OTA available since the World Trade Center attack:
even though One World Trade, the new building, spent millions on infrastructure to support broadcasters, very few have moved back: the costs to install and operate are prohibitive for most
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post #8 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:34 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wxman View Post
The problem with OTA, the digital signal is not as strong as the old analog signal. I live about 10 miles from all the local towers, and only on "good" days can I pick them up with an indoor antenna. Wind seems to be the biggest factor on whether or not I get a good signal. On windy days, I'm lucky to pull in 2 of the 5 locals and their sub channels. I'm not about to go up on my roof to install an antenna, or run cabling from my attic, through the walls to the basement cable junction box.
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Unfortunately I must echo the WSJ - I work in the Silicon Valley in a high-tech company filled with millennials possessing technical degrees and very few of them know how to use an antenna to see free OTA HD television or even that such a thing is possible. Most don't care since they stream and those that pay for cable or satellite grew up in homes that did the same thing and therefore don't realize that it's possible. I am a millennial/gen-xer that grew up with antennas and even though I have a very good one and high-quality cabling I still encounter inversion issues and other reception challenges. Because I don't care that much about TV I can tolerate these anomalies but many would find these issues unacceptable. I just can't justify paying Comcast what they want for the Economy package or even Basic Cable (local OTAs and some other channels) - all those fees add up. Besides I can pull in a lot of local content via OTA that Comcast does not re-broadcast (sub-channels, fringe stations, stations not in demand, etc.).
I don't live all that far from the antenna farm that serves Philadelphia. But there is a hospital between me and those antennas and whenever a medevac chopper takes off of lands, that creates interference. I also still need a fairly decent antenna, cheap ones don't work, and I don't reception on the bottom floor of the house. So, plenty of issues there.

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post #9 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:42 AM
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Most of the good stuff moved to cable and if you don't watch CBS, NBC, or ABC much, OTA is low value proposition. CW can streamed for free, so can PBS. For younger viewers OTA is mostly DOA.
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post #10 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 10:56 AM
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Imagine the confusion and frustration these millenials will have after becoming aware of OTA signals and antennae, only to buy a new Vizio tv...
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post #11 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:06 AM
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it's click bait.

free TV? that's STEALING!


in reality, unless you live near an urban center, you won't get much OTA, and what you do get is of course limited to the big 3/4 networks (95% garbage).

even local sports teams - one of the last good reasons to get live TV - have mostly moved away from broadcast channels (non NFL anyway)
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post #12 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Are millennials clueless about TV's having OTA reception capability? Maybe the WSJ was engaging in a bit of click-bait, but the story itself is germane to our times. I added a bit of snark and spice to my own post, to keep with the theme here.

Anyhow, the crux of it appears to be that antenna sales are increasing, which coincides with the recent uptick in cord-cutting (which now is really about just ending onerous cable and satellite contracts).

Click here to read more: WSJ: Millennials Unaware of Antennas and Free OTA TV

Here's how it works:

Old people = "cut the cord!"

Young people/"Millennials" = YouTube


They don't know or care about your free antenna. They have Netflix and Hulu, yo.
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post #13 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Simonian View Post
Here's how it works:

Old people = "cut the cord!"

Young people/"Millennials" = YouTube

They don't know or care about your free antenna. They have Netflix and Hulu, yo.
Plenty of old people streaming ALL KINDS of video from the Internet, lol. C'mon now.

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post #14 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:09 AM
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I live on a hill here, and only 45ish miles from the big towers in SF, but still only get 3 nearby channels well (1 in Spanish). all the SF stations are weak at best, that's with a "50 mile" amplified rooftop antenna.
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post #15 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Plenty of old people streaming ALL KINDS of video from the Internet, lol. C'mon now.
I wasn't saying that "old people don't use the internet" or stream.

I'm saying that is how young people consume media. Through their phone, PC and tablet. Of course they still use the tv. Just not like this. The point is that they don't care about the free local stations because they are too busy with other forms of media and get the same content on those channels that is important to them, elsewhere. Why bother at all with an antenna when you can have it all in your hands and on demand. And they do.

"Millennials" aren't sitting around the living room tv watching free local channels. That's what I'm saying.
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post #16 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:20 AM
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I've been DVRing OTA HD recordings for at least 10 or 12 years now. Throughout that time, 99% of the people I've ever talked "TV" seem confused or in disbelief that you could just get shows for free.

When I told them that those shows were also in much higher quality than the versions they were watching from their "provider" then they thought I was intentionally BSing them.
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post #17 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:25 AM
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I purchased the lifetime Tivo Premiere sub for $399 in 2011. I cut the cord in 2012 when I moved to a location that would allow me to use aTerk powered indoor antenna that would get me cbs, abc, nbc, fox, and 4-5 other regional channels. These come in very nicely and I do not have to touch the antenna at all to receive any of the channels.

I have the antenna going into a four way split powered antenna amplifier and run that to all my TV's in the two bedrooms and the TiVo. I have been recording all my favorite shows like NCIS, Blue Bloods, Chicago fire etc for years.

I do have Netflix 4k and Amazon Prime for anything else. I pay $58/ mo for 125 down 12 up internet as I am also a pc gamer. So now I am down to less than $6 a month for the lifetime Tivo sub. $400 /72 months. As long as the hard drive works on the Tivo I am good to go. I am amazed it has lasted this long. Knock on wood!
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post #18 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:25 AM
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I don't personally know anyone unaware of OTA TV, regardless of age. Well, my 4 year old nephew probably doesn't know. As has already been pointed out, getting good reception is hit or miss, depending on location. I know CBS, FOX and PBS allow streaming of their shows, I am not sure about NBC or ABC. I unhooked my antenna last year because there was nothing on that interested me. I check various websites for news and weather, and use Netflix for movies and shows. I rent, buy or borrow Blu-rays (sometimes DVDs) from Redbox and the library.

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post #19 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Simonian View Post
I wasn't saying that "old people don't use the internet" or stream.

I'm saying that is how young people consume media. Through their phone, PC and tablet. Of course they still use the tv. Just not like this. The point is that they don't care about the free local stations because they are too busy with other forms of media and get the same content on those channels that is important to them, elsewhere. Why bother at all with an antenna when you can have it all in your hands and on demand. And they do.

"Millennials" aren't sitting around the living room tv watching free local channels. That's what I'm saying.
Regarding people of all ages and TV, Cable & satellite remain popular, even in the age group. OTA is dead to me and everyone I know.

http://www.businessinsider.com/mille...netflix-2017-4
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post #20 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Regarding people of all ages and TV, Cable & satellite remain popular, even in the age group. OTA is dead to me and everyone I know.

http://www.businessinsider.com/mille...netflix-2017-4

I've been fortunate to have cable tv my whole life.

When I did not have cable tv to watch, I had a Nintendo or Sega console to play or VHS tapes to watch. Oh! And Legos.
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post #21 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuteTibiImperes View Post
...If I were to cut the cord, which is an idea I'm always tempted by, I might want to get a better antenna to get more OTA channels and more solid reception, but I'd also need to find some sort of DVR that can inegrate with a program guide as I never watch anything live as it airs.
I'm located 23-31 miles from broadcast antennas in the same general direction. Using a Silicon Dust tuner and an antenna in the attic Windows Media Center stores the locals on a 2 Gb hard drive.
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post #22 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Plenty of old people streaming ALL KINDS of video from the Internet, lol. C'mon now.
Yes we do - lots of those Lawrence Welk and Mitch Miller videos Seriously, I've never had satellite or cable. In my old house in the DC area I got Baltimore and DC stations. Where I live now I get OTA, have Netflix and Amazon Prime and everyone I know bitches about the costs for their provider sooner or later and also the service a bit less often. There are two providers (besides satellite), Spectrum and AT&T. I had a friend who just switched to one for a few days and then switched back. Between all the movies I own, music files I own and Netflix and Amazon Prime and other interests, I really don't have time for anything else (and I'm retired).
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post #23 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 12:34 PM
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I forget OTA stations are still available.

I'm so used to cable and streaming. Makes me want to get an anttena.

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post #24 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 12:54 PM
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I've lived in 3 different homes, all in the suburbs, and not at one of them could I get good reception. The problem with digital OTA is that when reception is even a little shaky, the show just blanks for periods of time, meaning missed dialog and visuals.

With analog over the air, you could get snow and ghosting in the video, and if it was especially bad white noise mixed in with the audio, but that is much better then just blanking out.

OTA for HDTV has been a complete bust in my experience.
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post #25 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 01:21 PM
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My problem with OTA, is that 99% of the programming is crap. It's full of sexual innuendo, violence, and liberal politics. On top of all that, it's full of advertisements. They even cut out parts of the original movie/show to squeeze in more ads. Just wait - in a couple more years, a thirty minute sitcom will be 20 minutes of commercials and 10 minutes of actual program.

I would much rather pay a few dollars a month to not have to see those ads, and to pick the programs I want to watch when I want to watch. I think OTA viewership will continue to decline (only the poorest will have it, because they have no other choice).
Even the major networks are now offering streaming of their most popular shows with little or no ads (for a price).

End of Rant.
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post #26 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 01:39 PM
 
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In other news, many people don't realize that they themselves are Millennials.
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post #27 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuteTibiImperes View Post
I purchased an OTA receiver upgrade card and an inexpensive antenna for my Dish DVR box, primarily because it's limited to 2-tuners for satellite recording but with the OTA card I can record an additional 2 OTA channels at the same time.

However, as I've pretty much written off most TV shows on the major networks, and the cable channels that I record programming on typically repeat the episode a couple hours after the initial airing (so I can avoid scheduling conflicts), I haven't had to use it in a while.

The OTA recordings do look better than the sat recordings, but they also take up massively more space on the DVR, and running out of space is always a challenge.

If I were to cut the cord, which is an idea I'm always tempted by, I might want to get a better antenna to get more OTA channels and more solid reception, but I'd also need to find some sort of DVR that can inegrate with a program guide as I never watch anything live as it airs.
I cut my cable TV service a long time ago, it was the best thing I have ever done.

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post #28 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 02:59 PM
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I cut the cord this year, and I don't really miss it. It saved me like $70/mo and I still have far more to watch than I can find time to watch. The single thing I miss is MSNBC, but I still stream it from my parents' XFinity account quite a bit on my HTPC.

Quote:
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here in New Jersey there is little OTA available since the World Trade Center attack:
even though One World Trade, the new building, spent millions on infrastructure to support broadcasters, very few have moved back: the costs to install and operate are prohibitive for most
To say that New Jersey can't get OTA from ESB is complete bull****. You may live somewhere that can't get good reception from ESB, but much of North Jersey can, as well as much of Long Island, the northern NYC suburbs and a chunk of CT.

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in reality, unless you live near an urban center, you won't get much OTA, and what you do get is of course limited to the big 3/4 networks (95% garbage).
That's just not true, at least the reception part. Whether their content is 95% garbage is subjective, and I'd have to agree with you there (but PBS is the single best channel on TV, so that's a huge WIN for OTA). If you have the right antenna setup, you can often pick up stations about 70 miles away. I'm only getting about half of my locals, because my antenna is too small for where I live, BUT you can easily some really good antennas online and be up and running with excellent reception for a couple hundred bucks, even in very rural areas far away from the transmitters.
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post #29 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 03:08 PM
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To say that New Jersey can't get OTA from ESB is complete bull****. You may live somewhere that can't get good reception from ESB, but much of North Jersey can, as well as much of Long Island, the northern NYC suburbs and a chunk of CT.
that was not my intent: my location is the Jersey Shore and that is what I was commenting on
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post #30 of 96 Old 08-03-2017, 03:09 PM
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sure, 60-70mi across flat ground, but terrain is also a factor.

as far as programming, ok if you're into talk shows, late night etc, there are lots of those. local sports, maybe. but watching movies edited for TV, no thanks, and I can't even remember last series we watched on network TV, maybe "The Voice"... all the rest came from premium cable, or streaming Netflix/etc. that's where most of the quality shows are now. (non-reality, drama shows anyway).

of course that is subjective, yes.
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