DISH Network rolling out big 1080p update tomorrow

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dishI’ll be honest. I’ve never met anyone in real life who subscribes to DISH Network, but I’m fairly convinced that the company does exist and probably turns a profit. If you happen to be a DISH subscriber and you have one of the HD packages, then you, my friend, are in for what appears to be some sort of treat.

Tomorrow, DISH will start rolling out a big, fat update to all of its MPEG-4 HD DVR boxes. The update will allow the boxes to display high definition content in glorious 1080p resolution. Says DISH, “By early August, all DISH Network customers with MPEG-4 HD DVR receivers will have the only set-top boxes in the nation enabled to display 1080p content, allowing them to maximize the full potential of their 1080p-compatible HDTV sets.” So if you’re really into HD, this might get you a little boner-y.

The update is set to dovetail with DISH’s TurboHD service, which is an “all-HD suite of programming packages” and the recent launch of the company’s Echo XI satellite. DISH currently offers 114 national HD channels and plans to have 150 by year’s end.

Here’s the full press release:

DISH Network(R) Unveils Biggest High Definition Upgrade in TV History

ENGLEWOOD, Colo., July 31, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ — DISH Network Corporation (Nasdaq: DISH) today set the bar for the next-generation HD standard by becoming the first in the industry to offer high definition programming in 1080p, the highest and best HD resolution available.

This new functionality is part of DISH Network’s latest and unprecedented expansion in high definition services, which includes the rollout of TurboHD, the industry’s first 100 percent, all-HD suite of programming packages. As previously announced, DISH Network will also launch 17 new national HD channels tomorrow, surpassing its goal of reaching 100 national HD channels five months ahead of schedule. DISH Network now offers up to 114 national HD channels and plans to expand that line-up to 150 channels by the end of 2008, made possible by the recent launch of Echo XI, the most powerful satellite in the company’s fleet.

"Over the years, DISH Network has maintained a very competitive high definition offering in the marketplace, providing customers with a premium HD product including the best technology, signal and experience — at the best value — that no other pay-TV provider can come close to matching. Our latest system upgrade coupled with the introduction of TurboHD further strengthens our position as the leader in digital television and high definition television," said Charlie Ergen, Chairman, CEO and President of DISH Network. "We know that once consumers start watching their favorite TV shows in high definition, their viewing habits change and their preference switches to all-HD programming. Only DISH Network gives them that option, all for an industry-low price of $24.99 per month."

DISH Network’s new high definition services are supported by a proprietary system upgrade that, starting August 1, is being rolled out to all MPEG-4 HD DVR receivers. The upgrade activates a unique feature of the set-top boxes, improving the current standard of HD delivery used by pay-TV providers such as the ability to output 1080p programming. By early August, all DISH Network customers with MPEG-4 HD DVR receivers will have the only set-top boxes in the nation enabled to display 1080p content, allowing them to maximize the full potential of their 1080p-compatible HDTV sets.

To celebrate this new era in the high definition viewing experience, DISH Network is offering subscribers a special deal in August to enjoy the unparalleled picture and sound of 1080p high definition programming. Starting August 1, Warner Bros. Pictures’ blockbuster "I Am Legend" starring Will Smith will be available in 1080p resolution — same as Blu-ray(R) Disc quality — on DISH Network’s VOD service, DISH On Demand, at a discounted price. Subscribers with MPEG-4 HD DVRs may order the movie on DISH Network Channel 501.

Consumers can sign up for the best high definition programming and service in the industry with DISH Network’s new TurboHD programming packages, the only all-HD packages on the market, starting at $24.99 per month. TurboHD is available in three separate tiers and includes special "turbo-charged" features and benefits such as DISH Network’s award-winning and industry-leading technology, the highest quality HD available including 1080p where applicable, and the most-watched HD channels that may be viewed on any TV — analog, digital or high definition.

Current DISH Network customers looking to add the industry’s best high definition experience can get a "turbo-charged" HD package for as little as $10 more per month.

The latest national HD channels added to DISH Network’s programming line-up are: ActionMax HD (DISH Network Ch. 313), CBS College Sports HD (Ch. 152), Lifetime HD (Ch. 108), Lifetime Movie Network HD (Ch. 109), Planet Green HD (Ch. 194), Encore HD (Ch. 340), HBO 2 HD (Ch. 301), HBO Comedy HD (Ch. 307), HBO Family HD (Ch. 305), HBO Latino HD (Ch. 309), HBO Signature HD (Ch. 302), HBO West HD (Ch. 303), HBO Zone HD (Ch. 308), Starz Comedy HD (Ch. 354), Starz Edge HD (Ch. 352), Starz Kids & Family HD (Ch. 356), and Starz West HD (Ch. 351).

For more information about DISH Network’s 1080p programming, new HD channels and TurboHD system and packages, visit http://www.dishnetwork.com or call 1-800-333-DISH (3474).

[via I4U]

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