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PSA: You can buy a magical metal thing that gives you free television

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Are you one of the millions of young people who recently “cut the cord” and now only watch television through a variety of interchangeable streaming online apps and services? Do you sometimes get wistfully nostalgic for a time when you didn’t have to make decisions and could simply flick on a TV just to watch whatever was already airing, commercials and all? Well, we’ve got just the thing. It’s called an antenna and it’s been around for-fucking-ever.

According to a recent article from The Wall Street Journal, “antenna sales in the U.S. are projected to rise 7 percent in 2017” as millennials have finally realized that they can stick a $20 piece of metal on top of their TV and get a limited amount of free television for life. Most of these consumers get their primary TV fix from either Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, or more likely a combination of all of those and more, each of which require a small monthly fee. But even with all these various services, they have no way of watching The Price Is Right when they’re laid out on the couch with the flu. That’s where the antenna comes in.


“While some indoor antennas still look like old-fashioned rabbit ears, many modern antennas are thin sheets that can be hidden behind a flat TV or hung like a picture frame,” says the Journal, casting aside the image of your grandfather frustratingly adjusting the two metal prongs on top of his old set until the baseball game is less fuzzy.

Part of the reason antennas are just now being “rediscovered” is the fact that most people thought they simply didn’t work anymore. When federal legislation was passed in 2009 that forced broadcasters to upgrade their analog signals to high-def digital ones, consumers who owned older TVs were informed they would have to upgrade in order to still get the signal. In the end, many of those people simply upgraded their whole package to cable, and the general consensus became that broadcast TV was simply dead.

But now, like mason jars and penny farthings before them, antennas have risen from the dead and are making a comeback. Finally, millennials can experience all that mainstream network television their parents are always talking about.

[via Boing Boing]


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