On February 17th, 2009, all United States TV broadcasting will switch from analog to digital signals. Are you ready for the change? Even if you have an older television that does not have a digital receiver, if you subscribe to any major cable television service you will not experience any change in your reception unless your cable service goes down. In that case, you will not be able to receive a television signal locally anymore. You can purchase a new TV before the February 17th date that has a built-in ATSC tuner.
This tuner will allow you to receive over-the-air programming even when your cable service is temporarily down. You can also buy your own analog to digital converter box, a cheaper solution in most cases than replacing your television, VCR, and DVD players. The cost of a converter box runs around $40, but for a limited time the federal government will give you a coupon good for a box. To apply for that coupon, go to the DTV transition website at DTV2009.gov.