The End Of Basic Cable Without A Box?

by Categorized: Cable TV Date:

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Today’s Bottom Line column?

Basic-cable television subscriptions might be getting a little less basic in the coming months.

A Federal Communications Commission ruling last October allows cable companies to shut down unencrypted basic channels — the major networks ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and PBS, and public-access — whenever they want. To cable subscribers, that would mean the end of plugging the cable line directly from the wall to a television while adding, and eventually paying for, another set-top box.

It’s already happening around the country. Here, Comcast acknowledges it’s in the works. Cox spokeswoman Dana Nolfe says the company has “no current plans” to encrypt local broadcast channels. Charter, which serves towns in the western and northeastern parts of the state, says it will encrypt the local channels when it converts to an all-digital delivery format in the next one to two years.

More . . .

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One thought on “The End Of Basic Cable Without A Box?

  1. hosey

    Years ago, the FCC required the cable companies to provide free “over the air” (OIA) channels which are going away. The free channels are those that are broadcast locally in a given area.
    What the article fails to mention the is OIA channels on the cable (and airwaves) are in High Definition. The free box to be provided by the cable operator are inexpensive modulated boxes (Read: uses channel 3 on the TV) with NO HD- you must upgade to a more expensive box rental to get HD- you now get poor definition picture quality with your HD TV. Sorry, no HDMI or componemt video, you must pay more…

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