You missed it. It happened on March 1st and barely a word was written. No tears were shed. No pronouncements or prognostications about the future of TV.
As of March 1st, 2007, companies are restricted from importing analog TVs from foreign countries or trafficking in interstate commerce of analog sets. Bottom line, is that retailers of Analog only TVs aren’t allowed to buy any more to sell. Analog TVs are now officially dead.
You can still buy tube TVs, but they must have over the air digital tuners (ATSC). So if BUTVS (big ugly TVs) or LUTVS (little ugly TVs) are your fashion passion, you are in luck. The problem for the B/LUTVs is that the incremental cost of the ATSC tuner makes it pretty stupid to buy one of those instead of a flat panel or HDTV compatible TV of some sort.
So if you have any intentions of buying a new TV in say the next…..forever, may i suggest that you also call your local cable or satellite provider and ask for HDNet and HDNet Movies. Best to get the most out of your new TV :)
If you arent familiar with the Digital TV transition, you may want to check out www.dtvtransition.org
And just as an aside, the most fun to be had with the Digital Transition will come from watching cable, satellite and telco video providers battle it out over consumers trying to figure out how best to receive HDTV signals. The next 705 days will be some of the most consumer friendly price wars and amazing special offers rule the day.