The deal reportedly comes with a few strings attached including an arbitration clause which allows cable providers a place to settle any possible hardball plays from Fox. Cable providers are worriedthat Fox will pull NFL games from their cable systems to make DirecTV more attractive to new subscribers. Cable TV still makes up about 80 percent of the total pay-TV audience.
The question audio-video enthusiasts want to have answered is will News Corp provide more HDTV programming via satellite? Currently, their $10.99 per month HDTV package is a nice offering of stations(HDNet, ESPN, Discovery HD and more) but cable systems in major cities like New York and Los Angeles offer significantly more channels. If you just purchased a new DLP, LCD or plasma TV you care (alot) about getting the most channels possible. Also those who have Fox channels in HDTV now know that the network is sometimes predisposed to broadcast HDTV in the format’s lowest resolution (480p)when other major networks blast HDTV at 720p or 1080i. Nothing was said today about News Corp’s plan for more HDTV on DirecTV but everyone is sure they will be an aggressive competitor with cable. Inorder to beat cable in the growing market of HDTV they are going to need both a better picture and more channels.
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