11 Colorado stations may go all-digital next week | VailDaily.com

11 Colorado stations may go all-digital next week

David Migoya
The Denver Post

In Colorado, 11 television stations ” only one in Denver ” requested government permission to turn off analog broadcasts next Tuesday, according to the Federal Communications Commission.

Nationally, four in every 10 stations say they want to cut off traditional analog service by the original deadline established by Congress. That date is expected to be set back to June 12 after President Barack Obama signs a bill to do so.

Meanwhile, stations can still switch to all-digital broadcasts before then, but only with FCC permission. Broadcasters wanting to transition by Feb. 17 had to apply by midnight Tuesday.

In Colorado, 11 stations requested permission to go digital-only next week.

KDBI-Channel 12, a PBS station, was the only Denver-area broadcaster to make the request. The station’s analog signal went off the air in January when its tower sustained extensive damage from high winds.

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In all, about 700 stations nationwide have asked to shut off analog signals next week, FCC officials said.

Congress voted to extend the deadline because about 5.8 percent of American households are not ready for the transition.

Colorado is slightly better prepared than the rest of the country. About 4.7 percent of the 186,000 households reliant on free over-the-air television aren’t ready for the switch, according to the A.C. Nielsen Co., which tracks viewing habits.

Denver’s largest stations are discussing a plan that would unify them to a single shut-off date ” possibly by April ” while keeping some analog signals to provide viewers with information on how to switch.

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