AT & T ends deal with Dish; still needs DBS partner

Wed, 07/02/2008 - 8:25am
Brian Santo

AT&T is done with the Dish Network. AT&T plans to let lapse the five-year contract it has with the DBS TV provider when the contract’s term ends at the end of this year.

AT&T did not say what its intentions are, but it has only three options. One is to rely entirely on its own U-verse TV service.

That appears unlikely, since AT&T’s footprint for U-verse TV is still very limited, and will be for some time.

Its other options, then, are to either strike a similar deal with DirecTV, or play the two DBS providers off each other, to see if Dish offers a contract that AT&T finds more favorable than the one it now has. AT&T said it continues to negotiate with Dish.

Bellsouth had a partnership with DirecTV, which AT&T inherited when it bought Bellsouth. AT&T only recently decided to work exclusively with Dish.

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