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RCN will go all-digital in NYC footprint

Mon, 09/15/2008 - 8:25am
Mike Robuck

RCN is continuing its conversion to bandwidth-saving all digital with New York City slated to undergo the switch next month.

RCN, which started its all-digital migration in its Boston and Chicago footprints, said the transition to all digital will help it reclaim existing analog channels, improve the picture quality, make the network easier to maintain, and dramatically increase the number of standard and HD channels it can offer to subscribers.

"By going all digital, we can provide the consumers of the great Empire City a superior alternative to the incumbent cable and phone products. We believe we are at the top of the class in going all digital," said RCN CEO and President Peter Aquino. "At launch, we are able to increase our HD channels to more than 75 channels and are positioned to make good on the promise of offering approximately 100 HD channels or more in the future."

RCN competes with Verizon’s FiOS TV service that launched last month in the New York City area, while both Time Warner Cable and Cablevision also offer services in the boroughs.

In addition to more HD, RCN is increasing its VOD content, including hundreds of hours for free, as well as more subscription and pay VOD programming.

RCN said conversion will let it deliver up to 10 standard-definition digital or three HD channels per analog channel, with better picture quality, and use some of the reclaimed spectrum to support growing high-speed data services demand. The conversion will begin in Queens and will continue over the next four to five months.

Once converted to all digital, RCN's New York City customers will need at least a standard digital converter box or CableCard to view the new lineups. HD and HD/DVR converters can also be used and are necessary to view HD channels.

More Broadband Direct:

• FCC's Copps: More work needed on digital transition

• Cisco beefs up Carrier Ethernet suite

• RCN will go all-digital in NYC footprint

• Qwest names Euteneuer EVP, CFO

• Broadcom bows next-gen SoC for TV makers

• RMI to power Packet Vision's PV 1000

• NCTA locks in schedules for spring, fall shows

• Broadband Briefs for 9/15/08

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