Why the Switch?

DTV is a more flexible and efficient technology than the current analog system. The switch to digital broadcasting will enable television stations to offer dramatically clearer pictures, better sound quality and more programming choices. Under legislation passed by Congress - the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 - over-the-air broadcast television stations are required to turn off their analog channels on June 12, 2009, and continue broadcasting exclusively in the digital format.

Since digital television is more efficient than analog television, the analog turn-off will also free up parts of the airwaves to provide wireless spectrum for future innovative services by entrepreneurs.

What are the benefits of DTV?

Digital television allows TV stations to offer a number of new and better services. In addition to providing dramatically better pictures and sound quality, DTV also enables TV stations to provide several channels of television programming at once. This is known as "multicasting." DTV can also be used to provide data services (such as significantly enhanced closed captioning) that are not possible with analog technology.