Wednesday, February 15, 2006

DirecTV adding TNT HD in time for All-Star Weekend

DirecTV hi-def users will get a new channel, TNT-HD, beginning Feb. 17. You'll find it on Channel 75 if you subscribe to the company's $10.99/mo HD package.

The 24/7 HD presentation of the TNT East Coast feed will offer live NBA games and NASCAR races; series; movies; and TNT Originals.

The DirecTV HD package includes ESPN HD, ESPN2 HD, Discovery HD Theater, HDNet, HDNet Movies and Universal HD. DirecTV customers with HD-enabled equipment can also receive HBO-HD and Showtime-HD if they subscribe to those premium movie packages.

TNT in HD is broadcast in 1080i 24 hours a day and uses Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. The station also presents all of its programming, including promotional content and commercials, in 16:9 wide-screen, giving viewers a consistent viewing experience.

There was a full page ad in USA Today this week which stated that DirecTV users could get the new channel in time for the NBA All-Star Weekend which will be presented in high definition.

Time Warner cable users with high definition service also get TNT-HD, which broadcasts NBA games all season in high definition.


clayj said...

TimeWarner in Charlotte added Universal HD (which I really like) just in time for the Olympics... in fact, it's listed in the digital cable guide as "OLYMP". It's showing mostly Olympic hockey games, as well as some TV series (The Equalizer, Battlestar Galactica, etc.). Hopefully they'll keep it after the Olympics are over; we can use all the hi-def content we can get.

Wish TW would get off their duffs and give us ESPN2-HD and Cinemax-HD. It's getting to where I hate watching TV if it isn't in HD. :-)

Anonymous said...

Time Warner has a big note on their website about Universal HD:
"IMPORTANT INFORMATION: We will provide, on a temporary basis for Olympics coverage, the feed for NBC Universal HD. Again, this will be temporary for the Olympics. This channel will go down after February 26, 2006. "

TWC is notoriously slow in signing agreements with providers. We didn't get ESPN-HD for the longest time, so I don't expect to see ESPN2-HD any time soon. On the other hand, Cinemax is owned by Time Warner, so I can't understand the delay.

clayj said...

As I understand it, the whole ESPN HD debacle came about because ESPN wanted to be paid for each household that receives ESPN HD... but since TW didn't want to charge separately for ESPN HD, that meant cutting into their profits from the HD programming tier.

Foo on TW for dropping Universal HD once the Olympics are over. Again, it's probably a money thing.

I agree on the Cinemax HD thing... but knowing what I know about TimeWarner's corporate structure (i.e., the individual business units are all responsible for their own bottom lines), the HBO/Cinemax group probably wants to be paid by the cable group for providing Cinemax HD, hence the delay.