Cox adds more HD in Va., debuts new VOD interface
Cox Communications is beefing up its HD lineup in northern Virginia with the addition of 13 new channels, and the operator is rolling out a new user interface for its VOD service.
With the new HD channels that were launched today, Cox Communications Northern Virginia (NOVA) has a total of 78 HD channels.
The new channels launching include MSNBC HD, BET HD, ABC Family HD, Disney HD, HBO2 HD, More Max HD, TMC HD, Encore HD, Tennis Channel HD, Investigation Discovery HD, BBC America HD, Starz Edge HD and Disney XD HD.
With the added networks, Cox said it currently offers customers more than 365 HD choices, including free and subscription on-demand offerings.
"We're giving customers more of the crystal-clear, high-quality HD programming they really want, from movies to sports, local channels, and even premium channels," said Janet Barnard, senior vice president and general manager for Cox Northern Virginia. "And with no HD programming access fee like many other companies charge, Cox makes it affordable to get HD."
Cox competes with Verizon in its NOVA system. Two years ago, the nation’s third-largest cable operator launched switched digital video with BigBand Networks  in NOVA, which freed up some room for additional HD content.
Cox’s new user interface is a free upgrade for its digital cable subscribers. Cox said the interface provides faster and better navigation for its VOD tier.
"Our goal with this upgrade is to provide customers with an even more attractive, fast and intuitive on-demand experience," said Chris Pantoya, vice president of marketing for Cox Virginia. "The features make navigation easy, particularly since there is much more programming to see."
The upgrades include several enhancements to the usability of the Cox VOD service, including:
- Horizontal scrolling for quicker navigation through folders
- A “skip” function that allows the user to skip forward or backward in 15-minute intervals while fast-forwarding or rewinding
- Movie previews directly from a folder's main menu
- The ability to “jump back” 10 seconds with the new instant replay function
- Access on-demand programming from channel 1 or 1,000
Cox said it was also adding more choices to FreeZone, more HD content and more movies on-demand, including movies that are available on the same day as DVD release, but the operator didn’t provide a timeframe.