Updated: NAB Questions Nielsen DTV Data

The National Association of Broadcasters called Nielsen’s estimates of how many households are unprepared for the digital TV transition, “inflated.” According to Nielsen, 5.8 million U.S. households are unprepared for the switch, a figure not far off from the one that convinced Congress to move the DTV deadline 115 days from Feb. 17 to June 12.

According to the NAB, Nielsen’s data doesn’t take into account people who have not installed their converter boxes or those that have not redeemed converter-box coupons.

“Currently more than 10 million coupons are active but not yet redeemed,” the NAB said in a statement Thursday (Feb. 5) just hours after Nielsen released its latest DTV readiness statistics.

NAB research shows that nearly 40 percent of converter box owners have yet to hook up their boxes.

“These viewers may be technically unready in the strictest sense, but they are not completely unready. To get a truly accurate snapshot of consumer readiness, the specific actions taken by these households should be acknowledged,” the NAB said.

Nielsen responded in a statement that its estimates “measure actual readiness at a particular point in time, not a home’s intention or ability to become ready at some point in time in the future.”