By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
EL SEGUNDO, CA – DirecTV announced it will expand its offering of local HD broadcast networks to 67 markets, representing approximately 74 percent of U.S. TV households, by year end when it rolls out 25 more local HD markets in the fourth quarter.
The satellite operator is providing local HD channels for the ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC networks. Channels included in the expansion markets are delivered in the new MPEG-4 compression system, which requires one DirecTV's new MPEG-4 integrate receiver descrambler boxes and a new MPEG-4-enabled dish and LNBs.
The new local HD channels will be available to customers living within one of the respective market areas, and subscribe to any Total Choice programming package that offers local channels. There is no additional charge for local HD programming.
The 25 local markets to receive HD programming will include the following:
Albuquerque, N.M.; Mobile, Ala; Buffalo, N.Y.; New Orleans; Des Moines, Iowa; Norfolk, Va.; Flint, Mich.; Oklahoma City, Okla.; Ft. Myers, Fla.; Portland, Me.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Providence, R.I.; Green Bay, Wisc.; Reno, Nev.; Greensboro, N.C.; Santa Barbara, Calif.; Greenville, S.C.; Spokane, Wash.; Harrisburg, Pa.; Springfield, Mo.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Toledo, Ohio; Little Rock, Ark.; Tulsa, Okla. and Madison, Wisc.
DirecTV said its capacity for HD channel delivery will expand to over 1,500 local HD and digital channels and 150 national HD channels, in addition to various advanced programming services, following the launch of the DirecTV 10 and 11 satellites next year.
The satellite provider currently offers standard-definition local channels in 142 markets, covering nearly 94 percent of television households in the country, as well as 42 HD local channel markets, representing approximately 62 percent of U.S. TV households.
Customers can receive local HD channels by obtaining the H20 HD receiver or its new HR20 DirecTV Plus HD DVR, which has the ability to record up to 50 hours of programming in the new MPEG 4 transmission standard.
DirecTV is offering new customers who purchase a DirecTV HD or HD DVR receiver a $100 mail-in rebate. (Limit one rebate per customer.)
Existing customers are eligible for a $99 upgrade to the new H20 receiver and dish, plus $99 for each additional HD receiver.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.