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CEA Sees 3M Digital Cable Ready TV Sales

Arlington, Va — Gearing up for its HDTV Summit March 15 at the Washington, D.C. Convention Center, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) announced its forecast that 3 million factory-to-dealer sales of Digital Cable Ready (DCR) TV sets will take place in 2005, building on the installed base of more than 1 million sold last year.

At the same time, Gary Shapiro, CEA’s president/CEO, called for all industries to aggressively promote digital television products and services to keep the transition moving forward.

“The DTV transition is booming with more than 16 million DTV units sold since introduction,” said Shapiro. “But while consumer education remains key to the successful completion of the transition, a few key educational efforts are completely missing. For instance, it’s a no-brainer that broadcasters should be promoting DTV on their analog channels. Unbelievably, they are not.

“And cable — the industry that by law must create a competitive retail market for cable equipment — must join in promoting Digital Cable Ready sets and the requisite CableCARD. Beyond that, the CableCARD must be made readily available by the cable operator at an affordable cost.”

CEA’s “HDTV Summit: The Analog Cut-off: What will it take?” will bring a number of government and industry leaders to the table to debate the most pressing issues in the DTV transition. Among those scheduled to speak are Fred Upton (R-MI), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet, and John Ensign (R-Nev.), chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Technology, Innovation and Competitiveness.