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HDTV Gets Ready for Prime Time

Techstination feature for Tuesday, December 31, 2002

High definition TV gets ready for prime time. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on todays technology. It has been one of the biggest obstacles to the widespread consumer acceptance of high definition TV... .the inability to receive the signals through most cable systems in the United States. But a December agreement between cable operators and TV manufacturers should change that. Dave Arland is the director of trade relations with Thomson Multimedia... parent of the RCA brand... and one of the negotiators of the agreement... .

"We've worked out a way in the future, in probably about two years, for consumers to go into stores, find an HDTV set that they can afford, and then take it home and plug it right into their cable line and watch great high definition television. It is going to take a couple of years for manufacturers to bring these products out on the market and more importantly, the cable operators around the country, themselves, to deploy this new technology."

The situation now is that HDTV owners can watch over the air HD signals if they can receive them... or get a handful of HD channels from satellite systems. Very few cable operators offer high definition...

"There are about ten thousand cable companies in America and only about a hundred of them have been carrying HDTV."

The new agreement sets a standard that they all will follow. One concern TV makers have now... is that sales may slow down until those new, cable ready high definition sets arrive. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.