Satellite companies broadcast signals from giant satellites in the atmosphere directly to your satellite dish on the outside of your home. From there, the signal passes through a coaxial cable to your receiver. The receiver converts the signal from the satellite dish into a signal that can be sent and viewed on your television. A phone line is required for ordering Pay Per View movies and for billing purposes. The phone line plugs into a jack in the back of the receiver most likely labelled "Line".
Television programming isn't what it used to be. You used to just click the channel and pick a show. Now, there's Interactive TV or iTV. Interactive TV is popular among millions of viewers in parts of Europe and set to be part of television sets among U.S. homes by the end of 2006. Interactive TV is the combination of video on demand, viewer-centric advertising, video games, and Internet content.
Just how interactive is it? Imagine the television will gauge your response to advertising and cater its commercial content to your tastes. Whether you find iTV to be an exciting new way to use technology or a bit too engaging, it certainly will alter television in the future.
High Definition TV - If you've been anywhere around a civilized, television watching consumer nation lately, you've probably heard the term mentioned. But what exactly is high definition TV and what is all the hype about? Well, HDTV delivers an amazing picture like quality to your television screen for starters. HDTV is a digital television format that provides higher resolution images due to the more detailed signal that an HD signal sends to your screen.
Here's why HDTV has such a picture perfect impact on your screen. Traditional television signals utilize analog to send information to your screen. Clarity and color can be measured in terms of lines of resolution. HDTV uses a cable or satellite TV signal to send the same information to your television set at about twice the resolution. Not only do you get an amazing, crisp picture with HDTV, you also get the sound quality of Dolby digital surround sound as well. In order to view a high definition signal from satellite TV, you must have a high definition television.
For customers who already have satellite TV service with DIRECTV, XM radio has been made available as part of the subscription service. XM radio, a satellite radio service initially targeted to mobile listeners like commuting drivers, normally charges a monthly subscription fee. However, DIECTV has partnered with XM radio to offer its customers a selection of free music channels. DirecTV customers under the Total Choice plan, will have access to 50 XM radio stations while Choice Plus subscribers will get over 60 channels of XM radio channels to choose from. This change in subscription means that DIRECTV customers will get to channel surf both satellite TV and satellite radio.
The cable companies and major satellite TV companies like DIRECTV and Dish Network have been competing for their share of the market space to offer HDTV to the consumer market. One cable company, Cablevision Systems Corporation, has thrown its hat into the mix as a HDTV provider. However, Cablevision has decided to compete by adding its own satellite TV service under Rainbow DBS to offer 39 HDTV channels. The competition continues between the Big Three. Before purchasing your satellite features, assess what you want from your programming guides and what features are important to you. Then, take a look at all the players and review consumer reports sites for more information on products and services.
Have you been meaning to dust off that old Spanish language book from college for an upcoming trip to Spain, but you've been spending too much time in front of the tube instead? Now you can do both at the same time. Satellite TV channels often carry foreign language channels. Train your ear for that foreign language you wanted to learn before traveling to another country. If you want a more interactive approach, look for a satellite TV channel that is specifically geared towards teaching a language. You can choose from a range of languages, including Spanish, French, and German.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|