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Qwest goes direct for satellite TV

Wed, 10/06/2004 - 8:00pm
Jeff Baumgartner

Just weeks after announcing plans to scuttle a co-marketing relationship with EchoStar Communications, Denver-based RBOC Qwest Communications International Inc. extended plans to bundle in digital television services from DirecTV.

Last year, Qwest signed co-marketing deals with both DBS firms, with DirecTV handling Phoenix, Tucson and Seattle, and EchoStar taking on Colorado and Nebraska.

Under the new deal, to take hold in Q1 2005, Qwest will offer DirecTV services to residential subs across the western U.S. Qwest will market the service and provide tier-1 customer support for the co-offering.

"Our partnership with DirecTV gives customers one point of contact for all of their programming needs, including installation, billing and customer service," said Qwest Chairman and CEO Ricahrd Notebaert, in a release.

The companies are also collaborating on a plan to market DSL services to existing DirecTV customers. A separate agreement will also give Qwest the chance to sell DirecTV to apartments and other multiple dwelling units.

The expanded deal seemingly places any additional Qwest-led video efforts further on the backburner. The telco offers VDSL services in Phoenix, Ariz. and Highlands Ranch, Colo., but has yet to commit to any additional rollouts of that technology or fiber-to-the-premise.

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