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New Technology: Cable Cards Allow You to Get Rid of that Clunky Box

Are you fed up of all the boxes that are collecting around your television? You probably have a video player, a DVD, and a cable network set top box - not to mention your television and all those remotes and cabling spaghetti. Well, it is possible to cut this down by using a cable card - slightly thicker than credit card size - instead of getting a digital set top box for your cable TV.

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Integrated Television Sets

For some time you have been able to buy television sets that incorporate a tuner so that it can decode high-definition signals, and you have been able to buy plain cable TV ready sets

Now you can purchase television sets that are cable digital ready (DCR) that incorporate some of the functions usually performed in the digital cable box. Other digital cable functions - such as unscrambling premium channels - are contained in the cable card which is placed in a slot in the television set.

Cable Cards are Growing Up

This development is still in its infancy. At the moment, cable cards do not offer two-way communication or hard-drive video recording. These developments are likely to happen in the next year or two as cable TV technology develops and market demand peaks.

If you are keen to reduce clunky boxes, which can stand in the way of wall-mounted flat-screen TV; if you are fed up with yet another cabling rat's nest; if you need cable network features, such as cable digital interactive program guides and video on demand through your remote control, then this could be a good cable TV buy for you.
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