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Powell: Don't rush to digital

FCC Chairman Michael Powell says Europe's lead in "third-generation [3G]" wireless services is no reason to rush the digital-TV transition. "A lot of times, first technology is seductive," he told the Precursor Group last week. "The Japanese had a whole HDTV system developed before we got started. Funny thing, they missed the ability to digitize." Forcing TV stations to abandon analog by 2006 just to make room for unproven 3G technology won't go over well if few viewers have DTV sets, he warned: "There is very little tolerance for TVs' going black in America."