IS IT TIME FOR YOU TO UPGRADE YOUR TELEVISION?
Millions of $40 government coupons become available Tuesday to help low-tech television owners buy special converter boxes for older TVs that might not work after the switch
to digital broadcasting.
Beginning Feb. 18, 2009, anyone who does not own a digital set and still gets their programming via over-the-air antennas will no longer receive a picture. That’s the day the television industry completes its transition from old-style analog broadcasting to digital. The converter boxes are expected to cost between $50 and $70 and will be available at most major electronics retail stores. Starting Tuesday, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration will begin accepting requests for two $40 coupons per household to be used toward the purchase of the boxes. Viewers who have satellite or cable service will not need a box.
To request a coupon, consumers can apply online at www.dtv2009.gov starting Tuesday. The government also has set up a 24-hour hotline to take requests, 1-888-DTV-2009 (1-888-388-2009).