Posts tagged ‘Over-the-Air’
The Future of TV blog has highlighted the diverse program offerings that broadcast television provides to viewers – from coverage of local sports to Spanish-language programs, broadcast TV has something for everyone to enjoy! The best part is that there are no monthly fees attached – broadcast television is free, you just need an antenna.
Broadcast stations across the country use their side channels (also known as “multi-casting”) to provide viewers with more options at no cost. These side channels cover a variety of genres and interests, including travel, cooking, home improvement, sports and religious-focused programming.
With Passover and Easter taking place this week, remember to check your local broadcast stations’ side channels for religious programming, and enjoy a service from the comfort of your own home.
Illinois and Nevada state legislatures recently passed legislation that recognizes the important role of local broadcast stations during times of crisis. The new laws, which help broadcasters stay on-air during emergencies, reinforce that local radio and TV stations are often the only place to turn for critical information during difficult times.
First informer laws ensure individual broadcasters (key personnel such as a news anchor or cameraman) have transportation to their stations as well as the equipment needed to stay on the air to relay critical information to their communities (fuel and back-up generators). Joining Illinois and Nevada, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina are the most recent states to take action to get first informers legislation passed. It is broadcasters’ hope that more states follow suit so stations can continue providing a vital lifeline for viewers and listeners.
Indeed, from the recent snow storm in New England to Hurricane Sandy, broadcasters are who communities turn to in times of crisis. As the New Jersey Broadcasters Association’s Paul Rotella said: “No one gets the word out like free, over-the-air broadcasters.”
Wally Babbidge, station manager at WHLT in Hattiesburg-Laurel, Miss., received an email from a parent saying he was able to reach his son in time to take cover before the tornado touched down thanks to the station’s work. After the tornado, the station delivered the community information from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and informed volunteers where the Salvation Army would be serving food for those impacted by the tornado. Babbidge says that broadcasters are, “the pulse of the community when it comes to providing information people need to know about life-threatening situations.”
Tell us, do you think your state should adopt a first informer law for your local broadcasters?
The biggest game of the year is just three days away! This Sunday, millions of football fans across the country will watch the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers go head to head to vie for a Super Bowl championship.
Last year, more than 40 million Americans watched the New York Giants defeat the New England Patriots to become Super Bowl XLVI champs. This game marked the third consecutive year that the Super Bowl was the most-watched television show in U.S. history – a new record.
Also popular among NFL fans is watching home-team games on local TV. The Television Advertising Bureau (TVB) recently found that of 30 markets where a regular season game aired on both a local TV station and on a cable network, 74 percent of households chose to watch the game on their local station.
“Local TV stations provide the community insights, flavor and fun that fans crave,” says TVB President and CEO Steve Lanzano. “When it comes to NFL football, local broadcast television provides a significant home team advantage.”
Whether you’re a die-hard football fan or just tuning in to catch the funny ads or the half-time show, you know you can depend on your local TV station to bring you all the excitement of the Super Bowl live.
Broadcasters Work Nonstop as First Informers to Serve Their Local Communities During Hurricane Sandy
Earlier this week, millions of people turned to broadcast radio and television to get up-to-the minute information on Hurricane Sandy. TV stations up and down the East Coast worked around the clock to ensure their communities had the information they needed to prepare for the storm as well as track the storm to know when it would hit their area.
Stations began providing wall to wall coverage starting at 4 a.m. on Monday. WUSA Washington News Director Fred D’Ambrosi led his news crew, preparing them to be on air for the next several days, ensuring viewers had the lifesaving information they needed. “Everybody left home on Saturday prepared to be gone for five to seven days,” said WBAL Baltimore’s News Director Michele Butt. “You don’t stop covering the storm just because the sun comes out.”
Stations ran non-stop storm tracking radar images and news tickers with emergency information and weather updates, with many reporters pulling 12-hour shifts. Stations also utilized text alerts, social media outlets and updates on their website and mobile apps to provide viewers with critical information.
Many stations lost power during the storm and relied on generators to provide coverage, in addition to relying on satellite, microwave trucks and mobile backpacks to submit stories.
Covering the storm was truly a team effort and affiliate stations joined together to share resources and content. Some affiliates brought in employees from other stations not affected by the storm, including Cincinnati, Tulsa and Phoenix to relieve teams working long hours.
“I salute the remarkable work of our radio and TV station colleagues now putting themselves in harm’s way to keep millions of people safe and informed on the devastation of this deadly storm,” NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith said. “As FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate noted this weekend, in times of emergency there is no more reliable source of information than that coming from local broadcasters. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of those in the path of Hurricane Sandy.”
Watch your local news and visit redcross.org to learn how you can help those affected by Hurricane Sandy.
Samsung and MetroPCS unveil new smartphone with live, local TV!
An exciting development in the future of TV occurred last week when wireless carrier MetroPCS and Samsung Mobile unveiled the new Samsung Galaxy S® LightrayTM 4G*. This Android™ smartphone is the first in the U.S. to offer live, local broadcast television with Dyle™ mobile TV.
Now consumers can stay informed and entertained on the go with the same local and national sports, news and entertainment programming on your mobile phones as you receive on your TV at home. This is live TV, not streaming. And because it uses the TV airwaves, not the Internet, it does not count against your data cap. Also, unlike streaming video over the Internet, an unlimited number of viewers can watch on their smartphones at the same time without buffering.
This service is currently available in 35 markets, reaching over 55 percent of the US population. Additional markets and stations will be added in the future.
Mobile TV can be used anywhere that the TV spectrum can reach, no need for an Internet connection or WiFi access. So where will you watch mobile TV? On your commute to work? Waiting to pick the kids up from school? At the stadium during the big game? Tell us in the comments below!
When you hear “political contributions” you probably think of money given to candidates. But broadcasters’ view their political contributions differently—as a way to serve the voters in their communities during an election year by educating them with debates, information and more.
Local broadcasters remain the number-one source of local news, giving stations a key role in increasing civic engagement in the electoral process.
Here are just a few examples of local broadcasters’ efforts to educate and engage voters before the upcoming elections:
- In Hawaii, KHNL-TV and KGMB-TV Honolulu televised a mayoral debate. Candidates debated a variety of issues, and current mayor Peter Carlisle also fielded questions and comments related to his job performance over the past term.
- Voters in Myrtle Beach, S.C., are in a brand-new congressional district in 2012 and have a number of candidates from both political parties to learn about. In June, stations aired debates between the Republican candidates one night and the Democrat candidates another evening. This October, WBTW-TV will air a third debate with the nominees from both parties.
- Of course the biggest election this November is the presidential election. NBC News is partnering with Telemundo to cover the presidential race. “Decision 2012″ will include joint monthly polls, coverage of the campaigns and conventions, and events focused on the role of the Hispanic vote, estimated at 22 million eligible voters. The partnership provides Telemundo access to NBC News’ political content and gives NBC News the benefit of Telemundo’s expertise in the Hispanic community.
And, like all the over-the-air programming broadcasters already offer, all of this election information is provided free to the viewer. Because of broadcasters’ efforts, voters go to the polls more informed about the issues and candidates, which contributes to a stronger democracy.
Wouldn’t it be nice to take your favorite morning show with you on the commute to work – not missing a minute of the breaking news or local weather?
With more than 120 stations across the country broadcasting mobile television signals, the future of TV is here – and it’s mobile. With numerous local broadcast stations transmitting mobile TV signals, and more consumer devices and adapters coming to the market, soon it will be very easy for consumers to get free mobile broadcast television on their laptops, tablets and smartphones. Best of all, the service does not require a data plan or hefty mobile data charges, because the signal is sent for free over-the-air.
Check out our new video that features mobile television providers Dyle mobile TV and the Mobile 500 Alliance demonstrating the devices and adapters built by manufacturers like Samsung and Belkin that run their mobile TV services. Watch the video below to see how you can get your local news, sports, weather, entertainment and lifesaving emergency information anywhere, anytime:
The beginning of June marked the official start of hurricane season, and once again, local radio and television stations are ready to keep their communities safe and informed wherever and whenever weather emergencies strike.
Ten members of Congress delivered statements on the House floor acknowledging the vital role that broadcasters play during severe weather emergencies by providing early warnings and disaster relief when the unthinkable happens.
The following members delivered statements (view video of members’ statements):
Reps. Gus Bilirakis (FL-09), Hansen Clarke (MI-13), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18), Billy Long (MO-07), Carolyn McCarthy (NY-04), Ted Poe (TX-02), Laura Richardson (CA-37), David Scott (GA-13), Joe Wilson (SC-02) and Todd Young (IN-09).
In addition, four members submitted statements to the Congressional Record:
Even Federal Emergency Management Association administrator Craig Fugate has acknowledged that broadcast radio and TV is the best way to stay up-to-date on severe weather information when disaster strikes. And broadcasters are now poised to deliver this lifesaving information to Americans on the go.
There are more than 100 TV stations nationwide delivering mobile signals to smartphones and tablets, and several models of smartphones feature broadcast radio. Because broadcast signals are sent “over the air,” even when cell towers are congested or down, local broadcasters are able to reach mass audiences with critical information through smartphones and tablets. Make sure you’re prepared for whatever Mother Nature throws at you this summer, and don’t forget to tune into your local broadcast stations to get all the information you need to stay safe.
The bad news is that June 1 marks the start of hurricane season. The good news, however, is that you can stay safe by tuning in to your local TV and radio stations to get critical emergency information. And many of you can tune in on the go using your smartphone or tablet, even if power lines are down and cell networks are congested.
How is that possible? More stations than ever before are broadcasting mobile channels. Mobile TV is delivered from your local stations to your mobile device using over-the-air technology, not wireless networks. Not only does that mean you can still receive local emergency information even when cell towers are down, but it also means there are no additional data streaming charges.
Your phone will need to be enabled with a chip – check here to see if your device already has those capabilities built-in. If it is not, consumers in many areas can purchase a USB flash drive-sized mobile TV receiver for their laptop or tablet, like the DTV111 from Coby Electronics. Watch this short video to get a glimpse of how this technology works.
Radio-enabled mobile phones provide another way for consumers to get vital emergency information when storms are looming. Again, even when cell towers are down or congested, radio-enabled phones are able to receive local broadcasts over-the-air, keeping you informed and safe. For a list of radio-enabled phones from major wireless carriers, click here.
Broadcasters take their role as first informers very seriously and local stations around the country are innovating to keep viewers safe and meet your needs of on-demand information.
Remember, when the storms roll in your local broadcasters will help you stay safe and stay informed!
The annual NAB Show always dazzles attendees with the latest broadcast innovations and gadgets, and this year was no exception. The growing adoption of mobile television took center stage at this year’s show, with many vendors demonstrating new consumer devices that will hit stores this summer.
We caught up with John Lawson from the Mobile 500 Alliance and asked about his company’s new mobile TV offerings. The Mobile 500 Alliance service includes 437 individual stations and reaches 94% of the U.S. population. This summer, it will also be available via an iPhone/iPad app with the purchase of a small adapter, and will include over-the-air mobile TV broadcasts with no monthly fees or hefty mobile data charges. It even includes DVR functionality to record and pause live TV!
Watch our interview with John Lawson and see a demo of the Mobile 500 service below: