SiliconDust launches an ATSC 3.0-capable HDHomeRun Quatro on Kickstarter


Source: CordCutters (Image credit: CordCutters)

We're in the early days yet, but the next generation of over-the-air TV is on the way. In fact, it's called NextGen TV — or ATSC 3.0 if you prefer acronyms. And basically it'll pair over-the-air antennas with internet-based supplemental feeds to allow for higher-definition content. You won't need a new antenna, but you will need a new, updated tuner.

That's where SiliconDust comes in with its first ATSC 3.0-capable tuner. It's an updated HDHomeRun Quatro, meaning that it's got four tuners tucked inside so you can watch (or record) up to four things at once. (Only two of the tuners are ATSC 3.0, though.) And the company is launching it on Kickstarter for $199 . The project already has more than quadrupled its initial funding goal of $50,000 — it's now north of $200,000 pledged — so it should see release in July 2020.

There's a good reason why this is launching on Kickstarter and not straight into retail stores: ATSC 3.0 broadcasts are still pretty hard to come by. It's being trialed in a handful of markets, with more to come by the end of 2020. But it'll be at least the end of 2021 before it starts to see any real scale. (And even then, it wouldn't surprise us to see that date slip further.) It's also a voluntary transition which means there's no great impetus to speed things along.

See where ATSC 3.0 is live, and where it's coming

For folks who prefer to tinker as well as watch, there's also a developer version of the new ATSC 3.0 HDHomeRun Quatro on Kickstarter. It runs $299.

Beyond that, you can very much think of this as an updated HDHomeRun Quatro. It'll still work the same on all the hardware you're used to, meaning you can watch over-the-air TV on just about any device you've got, including Android TV, Apple TV (via the Channels app), Roku, Amazon Fire TV, on Mac or PC, or your favorite phone of choice. And it'll tie into HDHomeRun's recording hardware, too.