DirecTV CEO Chase Carey on HD plans

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fredfa

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Jan 12, 2004
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Chase Carey, President and CEO DIRECTV Group, wasn't specific at all Monday as he spoke with financial analysts in about a 46-minute Q&A session. I guess this is the headline:

"...That satellite we launched a couple of weeks ago, as that comes on line that will free up some capacity to give us more flexibility in high def ."

From Banc of America Media & Telecom Conference Monday May 24, 2004
http://www.veracast.com/webcasts/ba.../id59101188.cfm
(At about 30:00 into the teleconference
Q: How do you see HD Local into Local emerging:
"There are levels of this which we haven't publicly laid out all the specifics (chuckle) that I probably would not at this point in full detail. (I think I should) wait to give full detail until it’s competitive and otherwise to lay out the complete detail./
But where we do, where we will be, we’ll in a two to three year time frame have ourselves in place where we can be fully competitive from a local, uh, local high def perspective.
And from that perspective I really mean to, um, a satellite driven solution that we feel is an attractive solution to our, to our customers.
And, um that is, part and parcel, um clearly it will use spectrum beyond the KY spectrum KA spectrum will be part of it, it is part of the cap ex step up, as we said we are really in a three-year window here where…we have some incremental cap ex spending really part of it.
From a historical perspective to get back up its really were we felt that GM because they were in the sale process, did not fully put in place the appropriate level of backup infrastructure as well as the satellites to give us the capability to be fully competitive long-term, you know, hi def and otherwise.
So as satellites come on board we are confident that we will have a full fledged solution, full fledged offering, that is very competitive….
That doesn’t mean we won’t look at digital and terrestrial and others solutions.
There may be opportunities to layer digital-terrestrial solutions and we certainly are going to work on those.
But we thought it was very important for us to be confident that we knew as a satellite distributor that we had the ability to have a full fledged, you know, satellite-driven solution, as we do today, to offer the best television service, the most competitive television service that is available in the country.
Now we have to develop a bridge plan from a high def local perspective to get through the next couple of years, the next two to three years, on that, and we believe that we will actually be fine.
We have got a deal with CBS, we’re working a deal with Fox where we can take the network signal in the O and O markets, we’ll have more high def capacity, that satellite we launched a couple of weeks ago, as that comes on line that will free up some capacity to give us more flexibility in high def, so we actually think that we’ve got enough flexibility to stay at the forefront of high def for the short term and then we’ll have this fuller fledged solution that will roll out in that three-year time frame.
And we will certainly look at other ways to enhance it through other paths.”

Later, (at 44:10) comparing the cultures of the Hughes DirecTV to the current DIRECTV Group:
“We really view this as a television business. And I think, um, Hughes, um, it had changed some over time, but Hughes clearly, they had an engineering mentality and really viewed this very much historically as an engineering enterprise which is why so much of the business was left to third parties.
They left it to third party manufacturers to manufacture boxes, they left it to third party retailers to determine what retail plans there were, to choose installers, call centers, it was a very “we'll engineer and create the technical infrastructure to do this”.
….
“We’ve got a product, DirecTV. We want to make it the best television experience it can possibly be. It is very much a different mind set. We come at it from the consumer’s perspective, looking at what is the consumer really going to want in a television experience.
Going forward you’ll see us bring a tremendous amount of focus on really the consumer television experience: service, content, easy use, and really technology as a tool, not as an end goal but technology as a tool for that experience.”
 
um......um.um...................um.um.................um....................Ted kennedy.
 
Actually the commitment to head in the direction of local HD channels was stated in another conference call earlier this month (within 2 years). As far as how this information/quote came across written down...well....in a conference call, the comments aren't exactly the same as a public presentation, they're more conversation.....
 
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