Watching TV, Watching, Living Room, Domestic Life, Smiling

Will 3.0 OTA Need Internet to Work? We Answer Your Question


Watching TV, Watching, Living Room, Domestic Life, SmilingRecently the FCC approved the new 3.0 OTA standard. With this move over the air TV will now have 4K, more channels, better coverage, and more.

Yet the new 3.0 OTA TV standard has raised a lot of concerns with Cord Cutters News readers. We addressed many of them in our recent Rumor Round Up but one still keeps coming up. That concern is will 3.0 OTA TV work if you do not have internet. So I wanted to take a moment to answer this question here after seeing it on our social media and emails.

In short yes 3.0 OTA TV can use the internet but NO you do not need internet to watch 3.0 OTA TV.

The new 3.0 OTA TV has the ability if you set it up to use the internet for a host of features like the ability to read more about a news story you are watching by launching a web browser on your TV if you click on a icon on your TV for example. (If your TV or tuner box supports that feature.)

Yet you do not need internet to what 3.0 OTA TV. Just like OTA TV now 3.0 OTA TV will include all the images and audio free over the air to pick up with your antenna. What will use the internet is some of the additional features on top of live TV.

So in short have no fear 3.0 TV will still work even if you do not have internet.

Please follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more news, tips, and reviews.

Need cord cutting tech support? Join our new Cord Cutting Tech Support Facebook Group for help.

  • Fred Koot

    How will this help get better reception?

  • ScubaMntMonkey

    I think it would be better to have a more comprehensive article about a few of the questions raised with 3.0 OTA standard than one quick answer to this question – like: the PPV, ability to track your viewing, range ability/change, etc.

  • TV Barrington

    Although a person may not need internet to watch TV, I can’t help but wonder if stations or broadcaster are somehow able to decide to exploit the internet connection towards blocking some/all shows unless you do have an internet connection. With FCC’s, Mr. Pai’s, strong connection to Verizon and a strong bias towards the cable industry, I can’t help but see where the FCC will want reduce true cordcutting from cable and still making a dependency on cable in some form. I do hope that I’m found to be 100% incorrect with this thought and concern.

    • dtrick

      I think the ISPs will slow down those streaming sites under the payola plan, forcing people back to cable. 🙁

      • jjimg1474

        My TV viewing might be limited, but I will never go back to cable. I have been a cordcutter ever since DVD players became internet capable.

    • Sunflower

      Aijit Pai’s backing the tv white spaces does not benefit the cable companies and belies your statement.

    • mADMAN in MN

      Same thing I’ve been deeply concerned about addressing:

      >>Although a person may not need internet to watch TV, I can’t help but wonder if stations or broadcaster are somehow able to decide to exploit the internet connection towards blocking some/all shows unless you do have an internet connection.<<

      Absolutely, I can see that coming.

      In the other thread to which this article refers http://www.cordcuttersnews…. there are a few technical suggestions/possibilities for invoking 2-way communication whether you want it or not..

      Privacy, on the Internet, is extremely difficult to maintain.
      Add-on all the 'blockers' you wish to your browser, unless you're vigilant it just won't matter.
      Or do as I've done for nearly 4 years: switch to a privacy browser.
      (I use EPIC. Just yesterday it blocked 3,679 attempts to "track" my activity online.)

      Privacy, in our television viewing habits, is the next target.
      Will there be ways to block such tracking attempts when viewing ATSC 3.0 content?
      One hopes so, but that remains to be seen (pun intended).
      There are enough technophiles out there who care about such things to expect SOMETHING.

      And for those who don't think privacy matters — or that it's already "impossible" — what you allow to intrude on your life is what you'll have to live with.

  • vnazario

    Will current TV’s/Tuners work with this new standard? If we will be required to upgrade our existing hardware, it seems a pretty important question to answer. Thank you for any relevant information provided.

    • TV Barrington

      From everything that I’ve heard and understand here on cordcutternews, your current digital TV will continue to receive broadcast channels, but once any of your broadcast stations start using ATSC 3.0 the 5 year countdown begins. Stations will be broadcasting both in the current standard and the new ATSC 3.0 standard. After that 5 year period, your local station will then cease broadcasting the current standard and only the new ATSC 3.0 will be broadcast OTA.

      You can still use your current digital TV and OTA DVR during that 5 year countdown, but afterwards, you will need a new digital TV that has the new tuner that can pickup the new ATSC 3.0 broadcast standard. To my knowledge, there are no digital TV’s currently being sold here within the USA that have the new ATSC 3.0, nor are there any OTA DVR’s yet. If I had to guess, I’d say the new digital TV sets that have the new tuners that can decode ATSC 3.0 might start being sold starting sometime either the spring or summer of 2018.

      There most likely will be OTA converter boxes that you can purchase too at some point along the way.

      Speaking for myself, I’ll most likely wait until the last minute to purchase my new TV when the countdown begins in my local area. I feel sure the first ones will be expensive, but quickly drop in price. Hopefully, Tivo and Tablo will have OTA DVR’s along the way, and then I’ll consider purchasing one of those too. I can see where I will purchase several ATSC 3.0 converter boxes for some of my TV’s (kitchen, porch, garage, and spare bedroom) to help keep my cost down, but I may need to strongly consider a new ATSC 3.0 TV for my family room, unless Tivo or Tablo have new DVR’s with the new 3.0 standard.

      • David Batten

        Keep in mind that if you use a whole house DVR system such as TiVO, HDHomeRun, Tablo WiFi Antenna’s, etc. and upgrade/replace it to the ATSC 3.0 standard. You wont need to replace the TV itself.
        Because if you view OTA with a DVR of some kind. The antenna is not actually connected or use to the TV’s Tuner.
        I know for me, upgrading my HDHomeRun sometime in the future will be far cheaper than replacing my $2k TV

        There will be lots of options as time go forward in the 5+ years before ATSC 1.0 is turned off.

        • TV Barrington

          Yeah, it’ll be very interesting to see the entire landscape of how both ATSC 3,0 and OTT will look in 3 to 8 years from now. Both the world of ATSC 3.0 TVs and DVRs may make it possibly worth it to rely more with streaming. However, the headaches of equipment cost could compare to the possible headaches cost of streaming when net neutrality ends. It’ll be interesting to see how these dominoes fall in a few years.

          • Sunflower

            If you get a chance, read today’s article on American Thinker: Repealing Obama’s Net Neutrality a Blow for Freedom.

  • b_e_q

    https://www.techhive.com/article/3238079/tv-antenna/does-next-gen-tv-spell-doom-for-over-the-air-dvr.html

    Another potential concern is that the 3.0 specs include DRM provisions that, *if* majority of broadcasters end up using for most programs, will spell trouble for 3rd party OTA DVR companies, and our ability to locally record free OTA content.

    • Sam S.

      i fear that to i don’t want to lose my dvr to the drm thanks to the fccfor everthing they suck.