. Broadcasters have to broadcast regular old HD for five years after the launch of 3.

In those five years you'll probably get a new TV, or worst case, have to eventually buy an external tuner. Here's the actual language: Here's another way to think about it: The first HD broadcasts began in the mid-90s, but when did you buy your first HDTV? As far as the 3. 0 transition is concerned, we're in the mid-90s now.

Things seem like they're moving at a much more rapid pace than the transition from analog to DTV/HDTV, but even so, it will be a long time before ATSC 3. 0 completely replaces the current standard.

HD tuners were inexpensive when they first came out, and are even more so now. The HD tuner I use is currently $26 on Amazon.

0 tuners are more expensive when they first come out, by the time anyone actually requires one, they'll almost certainly be affordable. 0 is not compatible with any tuner on the market now, nor is it in any way backward compatible.

To get it, you'll eventually need either a new TV or an external tuner, neither of which are currently available. We should start seeing tuners, and perhaps TVs, in 2020. Most likely these early models will be expensive, but that isn't an issue, since:

  • HD tuners cost as little as $30 to $40 now, and ATSC 3.

    0 tuners will eventually be cheap as well. Com

  • Standard HD broadcasts will continue for at least another five years.

    "The market" determined you didn't need an FM tuner in your phone, and in the few phones that had an FM tuner, if you bought it through an American provider, it was almost always disabled. Another point of potential contention is getting ATSC 3.

    At a most basic level, carriers like AT&T, VerizonĀ and T-Mobile are in the business of selling you data. If suddenly you can get lots of high-quality content for free on your phone, they potentially lose money. Ever wonder why your phone doesn't have an FM radio tuner? Same reason.

    Which is good, because there aren't any planned subsidies this time around for people to get a tuner for cheap. I'm sure this is at least partly due to how few people actually still use OTA as their sole form of TV reception. Maybe this will change as more stations convert, but we're a ways away from that.

    As you can see, there are lots of parts that need to get upgraded all along the chain before you can get 3. That said, we'll keep an eye on this for any further developments.

    Free TV on your phone It's likely if the hoped-for mobile adoption of ATSC 3. 0 happens, this return path would be far easier.

    0 is also further in the distance than the rest. It's also possible we'll see tablets, perhaps inexpensive off-brand Android tablets, with built-in tuners. But there's almost no chance of an ATSC tuner showing up in an iPhone.

    Then there's portable TVs, of which there are HD versions on the market, and have been for years. 0 versions of these will likely get better reception in addition to the higher resolution offered by the new standard.

    TV broadcasters, on the other hand, are huge fans of ATSC 3. It means more potential eyeballs and, incidentally, a guarantee of active internet access for that return data path.

    Hane feels that tuners in phones is "inevitable," and feels that international adoption of ATSC 3. Wharton says that the focus now is getting TVs to work, but mobile is in the plan.

    Cost (for you)

  • ATSC 3. 0 isn't mandatory, and it doesn't affect cable, satellite or streaming TV. It's highly unlikely the FCC, current or future, would make any sort of tuner mandate for mobile phones.

    There is talk of "gateways" that would receive the ATSC signals, and then send them over your home network via Wi-Fi for you to watch on any smartphone or tablet. A sort of Wi-Fi-enabled external tuner. In all likelihood these same "gateways" would also let your current TV see ATSC 3. Sarah Tew/CNET Return data path is still in the planning stages, even as the other aspects of 3.

    If we take a step back and look at how the physics of how it could work, there's a silver lining: it almost certainly would still require internet access. Most likely there will be an opt-out or opt-in option, but if this type of thing bothers you, just don't connect your TV to the internet. There's no way any TV could broadcast a signal with enough power for your local TV station to receive it.

    I mean, I suppose there's a darker timeline where the TVs have a 4G or 5G transmitter built in and talk to the network without any other connection from you -- but that seems pretty far-fetched

    . That would be costly to build and costly to run. In other words, the HD broadcast has to be essentially the same as the new 3.

    0 broadcast for five years, perhaps longer depending on future FCC actions. T-Mobile made a preemptive strike along those lines in September 2017, writing a white paper (PDF) that, among other things, claims, "In light of the detrimental effects that inclusion of ATSC 3. 0 can have on the cost and size of a device, the technology trade-offs required to accommodate competing technologies, and the reduced performance and spectral efficiency that it will have for other mobile bands and services, the decision as to whether to include ATSC 3.

    0 in a device must be left to the market to decide. " "The programming aired on the ATSC 1. 0 simulcast channel must be 'substantially similar' to the programming aired on the 3. This means that the programming must be the same, except for programming features that are based on the enhanced capabilities of ATSC 3. 0, advertisements and promotions for upcoming programs.

    The substantially similar requirement will sunset in five years from its effective date absent further action by the Commission to extend it.