Any glitches in the nationwide switch to digital television will be felt first in Wilmington.
The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday formally announced that the North Carolina TV market on would be the first to switch from analog signals to an all-digital format. It said five local stations will begin broadcasting only digital signals beginning at 12 p.m. on Sept. 8 -- five months ahead of the much-advertised Feb. 17 nationwide flip.
FCC Chairman Kevin Martin said the plan will help spot issues that need to be addressed before all-digit formats replace analog signals nationwide in February.
Wilmington volunteered for the switch. An FCC spokesman said the city is one of eight communities with technology in place to go all digital.