Thursday, October 09, 2008

Comcast Offers Free Basic Cable For A Year

In an attempt at snatching up new subscribers ahead of a government-mandated digital TV switch-over on Feb. 17, Comcast will be offering new customers free basic cable programming with another paid Comcast service, such as Internet or phone.

Comcast said new customers who choose not to subscribe to additional Comcast services can get basic cable for just $10 a month for a full year.

Basic cable is pretty much just that, the basics, in most areas you'll receive 20 to 30 channels, including free-to-air local broadcast channels like ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX as well as shopping and local public TV channels.

Cable companies are looking to cash in on some of the confusion over the government-mandated switch-off of analog TV signals next year. Studies have shown there is still a great deal of confusion over the switch and cables companies figure they'll offer a "cheap and easy" solution to get new customers. Basic cable does not require any new equipment, which will be a plus for many customers, however you'll still need to have cable installed.

After the digital changeover on Feb. 17, households currently watching TV for free over-the-air will no longer receive analog signals. The majority of these households will need to purchase a new digital converter box. The U.S. government is subsidizing a digital-to-analog converter box that plugs into an existing TV for those that do not have digital televisions, that have digital television without a digital tuner. Consumers can buy the box through a government coupon program, which goes toward buying the box at retail prices of around $40 to $70.

For more information on the digital TV transition and the DTV coupon program please visit out previous posts: Digital TV Converter Box Program - Upgraded Guide To Buying Digital Converter Boxes

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