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How NextGen TV Could Bridge Digital Divides


Cable TV operators, satellite service providers, and the behemoth telcos are happy to sell everyone their TV program service—to the tune of $217 per month on average, according to research firm Decision Data. That’s about the same as the average bill for all major utilities combined (electricity, gas, water, sewage and garbage). If you can’t afford that, like many in minority and underserved communities, too bad.

Luckily there is an alternative, and it’s free. Over-the-air TV is not only still available and free, but with recently developed and approved new technology, broadcasters will be providing new services to parts of the market written off by pay TV providers. No more “let them eat cable!”

NextGen TV is based on a new technological standard—ATSC 3.0—established by the Advanced Television System Committee as the newest version of over-the-air TV. It allows viewers to have a truly amazing array of services, starting with ultra-high definition (4K) video and immersive audio delivering beautiful pictures and sound. It is IP (internet protocol) based, but no internet access is required for it to work. It allows distance-learning channels with no buffering or pixelating and targeted emergency alerts that are not blocked because the cell phone system is down during a storm or overloaded in a crisis. Best of all, it does not need to be anchored to a TV set on your wall at home—it can be available to mobile devices as well—in your car, on your laptop and on your phone.

Read more at TvTechnology.