It wasn’t that long ago that over the air TV using an antenna was thought to be dying. Now thanks to the growth of cord cutting and Next Gen OTA TV ATSC 3.0 offering more channels and even the promises of 4K TV aired for free with an antenna. Because of this there has been a rebirth of antenna sales and usage to watch TV for free.
Antenna TV lost its popularity especially in the 1990s and 2000s as many started to pay for cable TV to get more channels than the handful that their antenna offered. Now though with the new digital over the air TV options you can get more content than ever over the air. At the Cord Cutters News offices we get over 50 channels with our antenna.
We reached to Antennas Direct President and Founder Richard Schneider for comment on the growth of OTA TV using an antenna. Here is what he said:
Despite the overall contraction in the consumer electronics category in 2022, antenna sales have been surprisingly resilient. The bifurcation of streaming content across multiple platforms and the overall rate creep combined with the continued cord cutting movement is causing people to re-evaluate their subscription costs and re-discover free over the air.
The Cord Cutters News survey is a sampling from a more technologically savvy and educated demographic. We are still in the belief that the vast majority of viewers are unaware that over the air digital television even exists. This presents a tremendous opportunity for growth for antenna manufacturers. There is a HUGE untapped market of consumers unaware of the benefits of digital broadcasting and with the current roll out of Next Gen broadcasting (ATSC 3.0) we think that OTA will be poised for extreme growth.
Now with the roll out of the new Next Gen TV even more channels will soon be rolling out across the United States free over the air. Many markets already have the Next Gen TV but you need to get an adapter that will support OTA 3.0 Next Gen TV.
The question now is, once the Next Gen OTA TV is fully rolled out will more Americans give it a try? Over-the-air TV offers many benefits, especially to sports fans as it broadcasts the games slightly faster than even cable TV. The picture quality is amazing and the channel lineup continues to grow.
The best part about an antenna is even if your internet goes out you can always count on your antenna to be working.
The only question is will Americans be willing to put aside their old notions of OTA TV as only offering a few channels to embrace the new Next Gen OTA TV experience?