Dish says it’s 1st to offer all-MPEG-4 programming

Tue, 08/26/2008 - 8:30am
Mike Robuck

Yesterday, Dish Network laid claim to being the first video service provider for pay-TV to transmit all standard-definition (SD) and high-definition (HD) programming in MPEG-4.

Dish Network said new customers in 21 designated markets in the eastern half of the U.S. who sign up for any Dish Network package will be the first in the nation to receive the advanced delivery system on all televisions connected to its service. This includes all SD and HD programming broadcast in MPEG-4 via Dish Network’s MPEG-4 HD and HD digital video recorder (DVR) receivers.

“Our complete MPEG-4 solution – which will offer up to 150 HD channels by the end of the year – uses the most advanced technology in the industry to deliver the best-quality picture to any television set in the home, perfect for those who have or are considering upgrading to high-definition," said Jessica Insalaco, chief marketing officer for Dish Network. "We look forward to expanding this advanced service to more consumers throughout the U.S. in the coming months."

Cable operators are also looking at MPEG-4 because it offers a 50 percent bit rate reduction in compression over MPEG-2, but cable is getting more out of MPEG-2 through techniques such as putting three HD channels into one QAM, which is being pioneered by, among others, the Comcast Media Center and Imagine Communications.

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