Hill Gets DTV Converter Demo


At the request of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Korean Electronics powerhouse LG  is showing off a prototype digital-to-analog converter box on Capitol Hill Thursday.

LG says it will sell for about $50—in the low range of recent handicapping for the price of the box—assuming "volume in the millions of units."

LG has hooked it up to a 25-year-old Zenith TV (Zenith is a subsidiary of LG) to demonstrate that the box converts HD signals and multicast signals as well.

The Commerce Committees—House and Senate—are preparing a bill to set a hard date for the return of analog spectrum that is widely expected to contain a provision to subsidize such converter boxes.

The subsidy will cover either those several million who can't afford them, or perhaps for all the analog-only households—about 20 million—or even all mid-to-large-size analog-only receivers, about 73 million.