Changing times and changing technologies - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Changing times and changing technologies

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June 26, 2005

Albany-- With time going by so fast these days, it's hard not to reminisce about the old days. "I remember the first television set we had was black and white," says consumer Glenda Shipman.

Technology gives us a glimpse into the past. "I think we had like three channels," says Shipman. There was a small variety of choices in previous years. From old television sets to old eight track players and cassette players.

"Still have some cassette tapes. They don't make any players for them anymore," says Shipman. Soon manufacturers won't be making things consumers still hold on to as we move into the future. That's because technology is changing right before our eyes. The days of VCR's and videotapes right on up to the analog television sets still on the market will soon be things of yesterday.

"They were great technology during their time but this is a new time now. It's the digital age," says Rex Audio and Video Appliances manager Mark Greer. Digital is becoming the deciding factor in consumers' purchases. "It's a very booming business," says Greer. A booming business is the sale of televisions and by December of 2006, the FCC wants all televisions to have digital signals.

"Which means that your analog set, even though it will work, will need a converter to be able to work," says Greer. So it may be better to invest in the digital technology. DTV offers better resolution and picture quality, digital sound that surrounds you and the ability for broadcasters to offer several programs at the same time. But is it a step in the right direction?

"In some senses, in some no," says Shipman. Either way, the change is coming and has been for a long time. "You stay where you are or get out of the way and let technology go right past you," says Greer.

Consumers are going to have to adjust to changing times and changing technologies. "I guess I'll go with the flow," says Shipman.

The target date for the transition from analog to digital television signals is December of 2006 but that date may be extended until 85 percent of homes in a particular area are able to receive digital television programming.

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