At midnight Feb. 17, 421 full power TV stations terminated analog signals and made the switch to digital broadcasting, according to the Federal Communications Commission which released final figures Monday (Feb. 16). The 421 join the 220 stations that have already made the DTV transition.
Even though the government moved the DTV deadline from Feb. 17 to June 12, hundreds of stations notified the FCC that they would prefer to stick to the Feb. 17 date. Not all stations that made the request were allowed go on the 17th. Of the 491 that filed with the FCC, 123 were determined by the FCC to potentially cause “public interest harms” unless they met certain conditions.
Following a second filing, 53 were cleared by the FCC to make the DTV transition.
In total about 36 percent of all TV stations have made the transition to digital. A number of the major market affiliate groups and the network owned-and-operated stations of ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC, have indicated to the FCC that they would honor the new June 12 deadline.