Antennas make a comeback to pick up hi-def

Consumers are buying more and more high-definition TVs, providing an unexpected market for makers of antennas

Newsweek reports that a new generation of rabbit ears and antennas are becoming popular again because they can receive free high-definition television broadcasts.

Companies like Terrestrial Digital of St. Louis, Winegard of Burlington, Iowa, and Audiovox of Hauppauge, N.Y., are watching sales soar. Terrestrial Digital’s sales have doubled annually since its launch in 2003, to $1.4 million last year, says founder Richard Schneider.

The company is “a hobby spiraled out of control,” he says, noting that he got his start essentially selling homemade antennas out of the back of his truck.

“People thought I was selling drugs,” Schneider says. “Nerds were showing up in my driveway.”

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