EchoStar states that the Channel Master K77 models will combine access to broadcast programming with over-the-top and DVR functionalities, promoting consumer choice in both retail equipment and in services for households seeking a non-MVPD option for video programming. EchoStar maintains that requiring an analog tuner “would dramatically increase the device’s cost, size, and energy consumption without any countervailing benefits to consumers.”
Specifically, waiver of the analog broadcast tuner requirement for the two models of the Channel Master K77 will provide consumers with access to new, competitive, cost-effective choicesthat combine over-the-air television content – including dual-tuner watch-and-record capability – with over-the-top streaming content functionality from providers such as VUDU and Pandora, all in a sleek, ultra-thin, energy-efficient form factor. As Ness Electronics noted, their “market studies demonstrate that low cost products that provide consumers with the ability to combine access to broadcast programming with over-the-top and DVR functionalities, such as the Channel Master K77, are needed to satisfy consumer demand.”
For these reasons, EchoStar respectfully urges the Bureau to waive the Section 15.117 analog tuner requirement for the Channel Master K77 models of HD ATSC receivers no later than September 1, 2013, before fall product line-ups in retail stores are finalized.
This is great news for those of us who have been in mourning since echostar left the OTA market.