Happy TV Dreaming: Consumers Think Everyone Will Get HDTV

Television terms such as HDTV, digital TV, and VOD can be confusing -- especially to the average Joe.

Now matter how hard your Best Buy salesperson explains things, not everyone may have a full understanding of the new television tech language.

Now, with the coming of the changeover of analog to digital TV signals in February, a new study reveals a fascinating piece of information -- that some 30% of the TV viewing public believe that we will all get High Definition TV signals with the digital change.

We can only dream.

That data also jives with some recent studies regarding public confusion around consumer electronics -- especially when it comes to purchasing HDTV sets. In some surveys the average electronics consumer believes he only needs to bring home an HDTV screen and turn it on to get HDTV programming -- not knowing that he also had to contact his cable or satellite TV distributor to buy an HDTV package of programming as well.



There are other studies showing some consumers can't even see the difference between standard definition and high definition. As a lagging TV technologist, even I can see every facial pore and worry line on Jay Cutler's face (through his helmet) as he tries to complete a pass for the Denver Broncos.

Many conflicting studies alternately say analog-only TV consumers are ready and knowledgeable about the digital transition, buying up converter boxes. At the same time, other surveys say many consumers are completely out of the loop, waiting for the screen to go to snow.

For you TV business executives, think about all this next time you have to explain to your cousin or grandmother what "streaming" video" is on the Internet, or what Flash-enabled video players are -- especially when it seems your realtives are nodding their heads not to look foolish.

Recently, my friend insisted she needed to buy a new TV set come February, even though she was a long-time cable programming subscriber.

At first I tried to dissuade her -- but she was adamant. I guess the consumer electronics manufacturers owe me a commission.

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