Things you should know about OTA (Over-the-air Antenna TV)

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#1
I thought it would be fun to start a new thread with things people should know about over-the-air television. Post anything positive (or negative) about OTA TV. Make sure to number each item so we can direct someone to this thread if they ever have a question that needs to be answered.

1. Over-the-air TV is free.
Yes, OTA TV is free from monthly fees. You should be able to receive OTA television signals as long as you have an digital TV or an analog TV with a digital-to-analog television set and an appropriate antenna.

Some people are able to receive up to 40 television stations by receiving signals over-the-air. For instance, here in LA, I currently receive 29 channels and subchannels.
 

Cutthecable

DTVUSA Member
#3
3. The HDTV channels also transmit 5.1 surround sound

4. OTA in some markets also transmit ATSC M/H or Mobile Digital TV. Expect to see portable handheld TV's become available this year.
 

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#4
5. In a disaster, most OTA TV stations have backup generators.
Your cell phone won't work, your cable and internet will probably be out.
But if you have an antenna, and power for your TV, you'll still have OTA TV.

6. There has never been a price increase for OTA TV consumers, in 60 years. How DO they do that?!

7. You'll never have to call customer service.
 

Tim58hsv

DTVUSA Member
#6
9. OTA channels are crystal clear. No more snowy or ghosting images, in fact the picture quality is as good or better than pay-tv services provide.
 

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#8
10. You'll be able to receive over-the-air local TV, sports, and news on your Apple iPad. A device made by Tivizen will go on sale in 2011 allowing you to watch OTA MDTV while on the go. Read more here: Direct Over-The-Air TV Coming to iPad and iPhone: Apple News, Tips and Reviews «
I'd like to see this one take off... it could cut back on the amount of wireless streaming done on iPads. The device seems to have one major problem: It uses it's own battery, with a life of only 2.5 hours. It would be nice if it could also pull in regular DTV when it's NOT moving: the article doesn't say if it can.
 

n2rj

Moderator
Staff member
#9
I'd like to see this one take off... it could cut back on the amount of wireless streaming done on iPads. The device seems to have one major problem: It uses it's own battery, with a life of only 2.5 hours. It would be nice if it could also pull in regular DTV when it's NOT moving: the article doesn't say if it can.
That one looks a heck of a lot more elegant than TiVit. If it uses the dock connector and costs only $99, sign me up!

The battery concern is valid. But you can only get 3.3v out of the dock connector (pin 18) except for certain Apple devices.
 

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#10
11. You don't need a set top box for each TV. Most pay TV providers charge $5 to $10 per cable box, and require one for each TV. That's $60 to $120 per year, per TV.

12. Each set top box adds to your energy bill. Typical set top boxes (STBs) consume 10 watts, DVRs about 30. At 10 cents per kWh, that comes to about $33 a year for 1 STB and 1 DVR.
 
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