Category: Industry Update

Latest news and updates from the Broadcast Television and Antenna industry

Aug
17

Posted in Antenna Update, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

Lucky #9! For the Ninth Year, Antennas Direct Makes the Inc. 5000 List

inc 5000

For the ninth year in a row, Antennas Direct has made the Inc. 5000 list, and I guess you could say that we are on cloud nine! (You see what we did there?) The Inc. 5000 list just came out and we were thrilled to not only see our name on the list but to see that we moved up more than 600 spots to 4106.

We experienced 69% 3-year growth and our revenue in 2015 was $17.3 M. With our gained sales, that means that more American’s are ending their relationship with cable and satellite companies. Our growth in sales=more money in our customers pockets. Not many people can say that, most certainly not pay-TV companies.

Just in July alone, we experienced over 53% increase in sales leading up to the Olympics. Americans wanted access to broadcast TV to watch the Olympics and we held the magic key; an antenna. It’s not rocket science, take an antenna and install it and never pay another cable bill. That sounds truly magical, right?

If that isn’t proof enough, take a look at our TV Liberation Bus Tour. Thousands of people are looking for free, over-the-air broadcast television, and we are happy to provide that for them. Speaking of the Bus Tour, we’re headed out on the road to help liberate even more Americans! Check out our #ADBusTour page to see where the bus will be headed, and if we’re not coming to your hometown, don’t worry, simply fill out the form and let us know you want a visit from the Antennas Direct bus!

“We plan to celebrate our ninth year on the INC 5000 list by giving away antennas on our TV Liberation Bus Tour,” said Richard Schneider, president of Antennas Direct. “Our idea of celebrating is liberating more American’s from their abusive relationship with the cable companies.”

Thank you to our amazing customers who have supported us over the years and truly are the reason we land on the Inc. 5000 list year after year. You all are outstanding, and not to mention extremely good looking.

Jul
20

Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

Why the Antenna Is More Relevant Than Ever

Antennas Direct Clearstream 4 Digital TV Antenna

So you’re sick and tired of paying the cable companies a ridiculous amount of money for hundreds of channels, of which there are maybe twenty that you actually watch. You’ve heard about cutting the cord and how millions of people all over the country are serving ties with the cable companies and embracing their newfound freedom with various alternatives. But you just don’t get it. You have a Netflix account, but you can fathom kicking your cable subscription to the curb and relying solely on the Internet for entertainment. How will you get the local news? What about the big game on the weekend? The answer lies in an HD TV antenna.

Now before you roll your eyes in disgust at the mention of an archaic technology, give me the benefit of the doubt. First off, modern TV antennas are no longer giant eyesores that sit on top of your roof like some sort of metal creepy crawler. Second, today’s HD TV antennas are powerful, and are able to pull in a variety of channels all in uncompressed high definition quality. Best of all, you only need to shell out your hard earned cash once when you purchase your antenna and that’s it, no monthly bills, no hidden fees. Sound like something you’d be interested in? Read on to find out more.

Why Use a TV Antenna?

  • Streaming video over the Internet is becoming more and more commonplace. Services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon are offering some of the best content available, but unfortunately these services are lacking in a major area…live local TV. While streaming services like Playstation Vue and SlingTV do offer some local live television options, the ability to stream these broadcasts is only available in limited areas.
  • Your ability to stream video online is dependent on your Internet speed. For an in-depth look at what kind of speeds are necessary for streaming video, head here. Generally speaking, most Internet streaming services require a speed of 5 Megabits per second to watch high definition video smoothly. For some people, this simply isn’t a reality, meaning that they have to put up with sub-par video quality, or a complete inability to stream altogether.
  • Digital television broadcasts that can be received by an HD TV antenna is in an uncompressed high definition format, meaning that the image quality is crisper and sharper to that of cable. While cable companies do indeed broadcast in high definition, the signal is often compressed, which results in a loss of quality.
  • HD TV Antennas, are able to pick up broadcasts from your local network affiliates, meaning that you’ll be able to enjoy high definition programming from networks like ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, the CW and many more.
  • Cable and satellite television providers often only carry a fraction of the channels that are available in your local area. With an HD antenna you will be able to pick up these “hidden” channels, as most broadcast stations offer additional regional programming that cable and satellite exclude.
  • Antennas can weather the storm. Cable and satellite providers can be finicky, if storm clouds roll in and tumultuous weather compromises your cable or satellite reception, you’re totally cut off. So even if you can get news stations like CNN, you might not have them during inclement weather. With an antenna, you stand a better chance of staying informed.
  • A HD TV antenna is a one-time purchase. There are no monthly fees and absolutely no hidden costs. Over-the-air broadcast television is absolutely free and always will be.

Now that you’ve seen the light and have decided to get yourself an antenna to reap the benefits of free high definition broadcasts, you’ll need to determine which antenna is right for you. Now that you’ve got an antenna, you’ll need to know how to get the best possible reception to ensure that you’re pulling in the maximum amount of available channels in your area, all in glorious high definition.

cutcable

Chris Brantner is the founder of CutCableToday.com, a resource for people who want to cut the cord and still get the TV they crave. Follow him on Twitter @CutCableToday and find him on Facebook here

Jun
30

Posted in Cable be evil, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

WRAL Once Again Makes History, The First to Broadcast Under Next-Generation Standards

jim rothschild

We’ve said it once, and we will say it again. If every station was like WRAL in Raleigh-Durham, the world would be a better place. They were the first station to broadcast a high definition TV signal in 1996, and then once again made history in 2000 when it produced an entire newscast in HDTV. They pride themselves in being the first, and the best, in many ways, and they have accomplished that AGAIN by becoming the first commercially-licensed television station to broadcast its news under next-generation standards. This is big news!

We have a lot of history with WRAL. The station manager, Jim Rothschild, is originally from our hometown of St. Louis and worked for KMOV, our local CBS station for a number of years before moving to WRAL. We have partnered with WRAL in the past for antenna giveaways, and they have always been supportive of Antennas Direct and over-the-air television.

Here’s a quote from WRAL on what Next Generation TV means for their station: “WRAL-TV plans to use Next Generation TV to provide a deep offering of On-Demand content, access to multiple sources of video to enhance linear viewing, and a number of other 24/7 streams of TV and radio programming, representing the marriage of broadcasting and broadband.”

WRAL, keep up the great work and congratulations on being a trend setter and blazing a path to new technology. We’re excited to see what they accomplish next!

Jun
13

Posted in Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

Antennas Direct Named Among Fastest-Growing Companies in St. Louis AGAIN!

FastestGrowingCompanies2016StLouis

Year after year, we find ourselves on fastest growing lists. When we first started developing our antennas 13 years ago, we received emails and letters, on an almost daily basis, telling us that antennas were a thing of the past and we would be out of business by the end of the year. Look at us now!  Our antennas are flying off the shelves at Walmart, Best Buy, RadioShack, and BJ’s Wholesale Club at a rate that doubles our sales every nine months. And we don’t even put big $$ behind marketing. The reason for our success is the amazing products we create. We never settle for okay. We continue to design and engineer the world’s most powerful TV antennas that receive stellar merit and awards. Cord cutting continues to grow, and we are reaping the benefits of people ditching pay-TV.

So we were honored to be named among the fastest growing companies by the St. Louis Business Journal. We owe so much to our team, our customers, and to all the amazing people out there who have believed in us over the years. Thanks to you, we are ranked 40th on the Business Journal’s Fastest Growing List, with a 48% growth over the past year.

Richard Schneider High Resolution

Our head honcho Richard Schneider says it best:

“Our customers are the smartest people on Earth. They realize that the cable companies are gouging them and taking more and more of their hard earned money each month. Who is that fair to? No one! Cord cutting continues to grow thanks to new technology, streaming devices and services that offer customers more content than they could ever need, and at a fraction of the cost. Combined with one of our award winning antennas to receive FREE over-the-air television, you have everything you need, and are saving on average $1000 a year.”

And a special thanks to the St. Louis Business Journal for their continued support over the past decade.

Read the full article here: http://www.bizjournals.com/stlouis/print-edition/2016/06/10/cover-story-fastest-growing-companies-2016-st.html

Jun
9

Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

ATSC 3.0, in Layman’s Terms

ATSC 3.0 better

A few weeks ago we shared the ATSC 3.0 video and a brief description about WHAT it is, but really, it’s a bunch of detailed, techie, nerd talk. What does it really mean for you, in layman’s terms?

Here are the main points on the ATSC 3.0 transition:

  • 4K Ultra HD Video!
  • High dynamic range high definition
  • 1 +4 surround sound and immersive audio
  • Way more multicasting! There will be over 100 sub-channels per main channel (the system has much more efficient compression), which means potentially hundreds of over the air channels per market
  • More reliable and robust transmissions won’t be prone to interference (this means no more break ups!)
  • Indoor reception will be MUCH easier with an antenna
  • Interactive, the view can control the viewing experience and will allow two way communications with the broadcaster, choose viewing angle on sports, etc.
  • Targeted advertising, this will be great for businesses to sell their products to particular demographics.
  • Metadata- more detailed show info, actor bios, all the fun background info you might be interested in knowing, but don’t want to spend time looking up!
  • Immersive and VR experience

Ultimately, there is a lot of buzz with the transition, but it will be a lengthy process. There are currently no broadcasters transmitting in 3.0 and they won’t be until probably 2018 at the earliest. It will all depend on when station decides to make the switch and even then, the consumer will need a device with a 3.0 tuner chip set.

For the most part, broadcasters will continue to transmitting signal in both 1.0 and 3.0. Once 3.0 TV’s hit the market, there will be a lot of people who will be able to access these features IF the broadcast station is transmitting in 3.0. It will be an interesting transition because there is not a harsh turn off deadline for 1.0, it’s not like there will be one day where all of a sudden there will no longer be 1.0 and everyone will be broadcasting in 3.0. That won’t be happening! Basically, it’s consumer adoption for 3.0 and how people decide they want their content delivered to them. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out, and we will be sure to keep you updated!

Jun
1

Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

The Antennas Direct Antenna Selector is Here to Save the Day!

antenna selector

“But I don’t know what kind of antenna to get.”

“How far am I from the towers?”

“Indoor or outdoor, which is better for my location?”

“What stations should I get in my area?”

These are all questions we hear on a daily basis. And we get it, it can be tricky trying to determine what antenna to get and take that step to cut the cord. We know how frustrating it can be to purchase something and bring it home, only to realize it won’t work for you! So to help ease that pain and streamline the process, we have developed an antenna selector!

What do you need to do?

Step 1:

Visit our Antenna Selector HERE.

Step 2:

Type in your zipcode. The selector will determine the best antennas for your location, both indoor and outdoor, depending on your needs.

antenna selector 2

Step 3:

Sit back and admire the list of available channels. You’ll be amazed how many stations you’ll be able to get, all for free!

Step 4:

Add the antenna of your choosing to your cart! It’s that simple. No more guessing what would work best for you.

That’s it! We’ve made the process so simple, you’ll wonder why you didn’t cut the cord sooner! Don’t hesitate to give our Connection Crew a call to ask them any questions you might have. And by ANY questions, we mean it! Not only are our products the best in the industry, but so is our service!

May
11

Posted in Ask the Expert, Industry Update | Comments

ATSC 3.0- What do you need to know?

Richard White House

There’s been a lot of buzz recently around the new ATSC standard and what it will mean for you. Our talented nerd group at Antennas Direct are currently in Washington, D.C. to learn more about ATSC 3.0. To give you a quick background, a portion of the spectrum is used for wireless, so the new ATSC 3.0 standard is the biggest thing to happen since the digital transition. And that is HUGE! Moral of the story, over the air television is going to just keep getting better, and that is what we like to hear!

ATSC 3.0 better

Here are a few key points on ATSC 3.0:

  • Television broadcasters are leading the way with the new system that will merge the capabilities of OTA broadcasting with the internet.
  • Broadcasters are evolving to meet the needs of today’s viewers and advertisers. They have YOU in mind.
  • This next generation broadcast platform merges the best capabilities of over the air and broadband feeling. The result is a convergence of the most popular method of watching live events with the variety of programming available online.
  • Next generation transmission system that can deliver 4K Ultra HD images with high dynamic range plus interactive features and multichannel immersive audio.
  • ATSC 3.0 is the world’s first broadcast standard built on an internet protocol backbone. This offers the advantage of both broadcast and broadband, designed to integrate with internet delivered content, ATSC 3.0 will present viewers with more streams, more choices, more channels and more flexibility.
  • Adaptable for single frequency network transmission systems that can overcome the physical challenges to deliver TV deep inside buildings and on the go. The result is better indoor reception and wide coverage for mobile devices.

ATSC 3.0 is flexible, adaptable and focused on the future, today.

Overall, this is great news for viewers, making it easier for them to watch the live, over the air content they love, when they want it and where they want it.

Following is the full video released today to learn more about ATSC 3.0.

Jan
22

Posted in Cable be evil, Industry Update | Comments

Don’t Become a Cable Company, Netflix

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It was just a few months ago that we wrote our blog “Netflix and Chill Just Got More Expensive”. And since that blog, it looks like Netflix has decided to raise their prices YET AGAIN. Now, we understand the occasional slight price increase, but twice within a 3 month period? You’re starting to sound a little greedy, Netflix.

According to Esquire, those Netflix customers who have been “grandfathered” in to the $7.99 a month rate, will soon be expected to pay $9.99 a month for the same plan. There is a way around it, if you really want to pinch pennies. Here’s the catch: you can keep paying $7.99 a month, but you will lose your high-definition streaming capabilities.

In total, the price bump comes out to nearly $25 a year. Not horrible, but it definitely adds up over time. With cable continuing to raise their prices, we hope that Netflix isn’t taking a note from their playbook. Fair warning, Netflix, it hasn’t worked out very well for the cable companies to gouge prices and abuse their customers. We hope you’re careful and aren’t planning anymore “announcements” anytime soon. Unless we like them of course ;).

 

photo credit: Flipping Money Bankroll Girls February 08, 20119 via photopin (license)

Aug
14

Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

Eight Straight Years on the Inc. 5000? We Are Not Surprised

SONY DSC

We hate to be bragadocious. It isn’t like us. But when the annual Inc. 5000 List came out a few days ago, we were not at all surprised to find our names on the list of America’s fastest growing companies. We were not surprised because this was the eighth straight year. Eight times.

At the same time we have experienced sustained growth, cable companies continue to lose subscribers. Now, we are not economists. We are not statisticians, and some of us barely passed math. But to this huddled group of antenna nerds, this looks like a trend – one that we have seen coming since we were founded 12 years ago.

Here is the simple math:

  • Antennas Direct, now a Hall of Fame Inc. 5000 member, saw a 52 percent rise in sales over the past three years. This short list of fastest growing companies includes Planet Fitness and Otter Products.
  • More than a half million Americans severed ties with their cable and satellite TV companies in the second quarter of this year, according to Variety.

You get it right? Television viewers are ready for a change. They are ready to wrest control of their digital freedom. And the key is an antenna – preferably a f*cking great one that has been tested and retested in the lab of Antennas Direct. That unlocks the best entertaining shows, documentaries, local news, weather and sports in full high definition. It’s simple. (Oh, and we have a product that makes cutting the cord even easier).

If you need further proof of the growing demand for free, over-the-air broadcast television, check out the happy cord cutters on our TV Liberation Tour page. And if you want us to come to your town, let your voice be heard.

To our team, our partners and to you, the cord cutting crazies who supported us before cord cutting was a term, we are eternally grateful. We are planning on releasing a list of even awesomer antennas fit for the future of television. Stay tuned.

Jul
23

Posted in Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

King of Sports Shaken Up Over Cord Cutting

chess

Ten years ago, when we would talk to people about cord cutting, we would get strange looks. (We don’t want to guess what people thought we were talking about.) But today, there is no doubt. Television lovers have spoken, and the growing cacophony of voices has rattled even the hallowed, throne of the Cable King of Sports – ESPN.

While they thought they were once immune to reality, ESPN is losing subscribers left and right. Simply, more families are tired of overpaying for content they could easily replace with a TV antenna and streaming service.

According to a recent story by NPR, “ESPN has lost 7 percent of its subscription base since its peak of about 100 million homes in 2011. And the trend is accelerating: 3.2 million subscribers have left since May 2014.”

Sports fans are notoriously smart about new ways to watch their favorite programming. It’s part of what helped to make a sports channel on cable so successful in the first place. And, if you mistreat them, they will find a way to get what they want.

Check out the full story HERE.

Watch out, ESPN. There is a new king of sports. And instead of a cable channel, the king is every household that knows the glory of over-the-air, broadcast television.

 

photo credit: Meeting of the Kings via photopin (license)

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