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DIRECTV HD Channel Anticipation (Official Q3-12 Thread)

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by Mike Bertelson, Jun 29, 2012.

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  1. Alan Gordon

    Alan Gordon Chancellor

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    EDIT: I was kind of thinking that myself... now I don't know...

    I did however get a little bit of a surprise though when I read the following in the network's thread:

    I still believe not everybody's going to be happy with the results, but those numbers do impress upon me more their importance.

    The fact that's it's (CW HD DNS) my personal #1 want aside, I agree... Ion East HD gives me a little hope, but I put the odds pretty low until D14.

    I think both DIY and H2 stand a good chance as well.... I feel like TV Land also has a good chance.

    I give 50/50 odds for CSN Houston (I think those are the odds I gave it?!), and I have no thoughts related to Universal Sports.

    Overall though, I pretty much agree with your thoughts...

    ~Alan
     
  2. Alan Gordon

    Alan Gordon Chancellor

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    For what it's worth, Shop NBC has gone HD!

    I have added it to the "NON PREMIUM CHANNELS THAT DIRECTV CURRENTLY OFFERS IN SD, BUT NOT HD" section of the list.


    Adjust your wishlists accordingly! :D

    ~Alan
     
  3. maartena

    maartena Hall Of Fame

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    The problem is... that the model for PAC-12 really doesn't work like that. They more or less have a similar setup as RSN's, where each of the 6 regions will get the LOCAL channel as the main network, and the 7th, NATIONAL network will be in the Sports Pack.

    You really can't say... "Okay, L.A. is more important so they get their local network in HD, and the national one will be in HD, and the rest of the regions.... sorry, your sports will be in SD".

    There is a separate topic of many pages on this forum where the model is explained in more detail. But what it comes down to is that they probably won't do "some in HD, rest in SD". Especially not since all the cable companies offer the regional PAC-12 in HD in all affected regions, combined with the national channel in HD.

    In a nutshell it is probably a "all or nothing" type deal.
     
  4. michaelruggeri

    michaelruggeri Legend

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    My one wish now is the Ovation Channel. It is a top quality arts and culture channel which also shows BBC, ITV and Australian TV drama series.

    Mike
     
  5. TravelFan1

    TravelFan1 Legend

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    Let me add my 2 cents about the PAC-12. Why not go to the following model:
    - Add National HD and Regional SDs in conus/national channels
    - Add the specific HD local RSN on Spotbeam for that particular region.
    - Put Saturday college football games in HD, and college basketball games everyday but Sunday(until Sunday ticket season is over) in HD on an part-time basis in conus.

    That would be more or less the business model used by the cablecos, with the advantage, from the sports bars perspective, of having all PAC-12 college football and most college basketball games in HD.
     
  6. Alan Gordon

    Alan Gordon Chancellor

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    The problem is that the spot-beams most likely would not have room for the regional ones...

    Some places out West do not have full KA spot-beam coverage either...

    ~Alan
     
  7. georule

    georule Hall Of Fame

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    Nah, I don't think I'm overestimating the demand (if D* started carrying CW HD DNS). I think the "demand" is going to be there and be met by "No, no, no, no, no, no, no. . . ." etc xThousands. And some important people might just like to avoid that hassle in the first place.

    Anyway, I think we threshed that one out pretty well, tho I'm still surprised that the network has no legal say in DNS carriage. I gather it must be the actual affiliate carried for that purpose that makes some additional money off allowing their signal to be used for DNS?
     
  8. fleckrj

    fleckrj Icon

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    One could say LA is more important, because it is the largest DMA in the PAC 12 and has USC and UCLA (and is closer to Stanford than any of the other PAC 12 DMAs are). Given the model you described, though, the one national might be HD and the six locals in HD on spot beams only into their local market until D14.
     
  9. maartena

    maartena Hall Of Fame

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    Yeah that has been discussed as well, the spot-beam thing. It IS and option, however bandwidth on spot beams is also fairly restricted due to the "carry one - carry all" ruling, which is causing DirecTV to launch more and more locals in HD (new markets, AND channels in existing markets).

    From some comments made in other threads, with the addition of all of the Spanish language HD in the Southern California region, the L.A. spotbeam (which is already spread over 3 transponders) is pretty much near capacity. So there isn't a large amount of spotbeam bandwidth available either.

    Additionally, the PAC-12 DMA stretches over multiple spotbeams in some DMA's, so you would need to have more than 6. To get the entire Southern California DMA, it would require as many as 3 spot beams to get PAC-12 regional to all areas. Same with Northern California, some of Northern California is on the same spotbeam as Oregon, so the Northern California network should be carried on 2 spotbeams. Utah/Colorado gets even more tricky. Too far apart, each would need their own spot beam.

    In short, it would be a waste of as much as 10+ spot beam slots when there is room on the CONUS transponders right now. In addition to the spot beams, you would still need to shut down some PPV for a few hours two or three times a week to get some temp feeds up for games. It would be a much more complicated, and a much more bandwidth wasting solution, and for what? The CONUS bandwidth realistically isn't needed for other channels. At least none that would retain customers and/or add to DirecTV's bottom line.

    I know we all want (including me) our "precious basic HD", but fact is that basic HD is really cool and nice.... but not something that would cause customers to leave.
     
  10. fleckrj

    fleckrj Icon

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    OK - so it looks like we are stuck with 7 CONUS slots for the PAC 12, 2 for TWC LA, 1 for CS Houston, and 1 for Universal Sports. That is half of the available slots until D14.

    It still seems odd that the PAC 12 needs six regional channels for only 12 schools. I guess they are planning for the future when they might have 16 schools. With only 12 schools there can only be 6 conference games on any given day, and they are usually not simultaneous - especially since the PAC 12 covers two time zones. Even if they expand to 16 schools, there could only be 8 conference games. Four channels with two games each should be sufficient. Any non-conference game against a major opponent is likely to be picked up by ESPN or CBS, anyway.
     
  11. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    You are making the assumption that we are aware of all announcements and channels for the next two years and the possible contracts that may come up to make it a must have or an advantage to include more HD in new deals. beIN was not on the radar two years ago. You have to leave options open to for new possibilities. Hell, it is only 13 months since the PAC 12 announced it was going to launch its own network. Not sure when they decided it would be seven channels. If you sell off all your bandwidth, you are stuck when something like this happens and happen it will if the PAC 12 is successful. What happens when the Big Ten decides it wants to start regional channels in the Fall of 2013?

    What if Comcast relents and allows them to add Philly and the northwest?

    What happens if the highest rated and acclaimed show winds up on H2? We saw the pressure for AMC.

    I think it is painfully obvious that DirecTV only added the bunch of channels this year because they found some breathing room with the new encoding. I seriously doubt we would have seen the likes of TCM, BBCA, Disney Jr, NGW, etc., if they did not come up with new technology to support them.

    Be cavalier with DirecTV's assets all you want. They are not. Nothing is fixed in this business. To assume they can squander all their reserve bandwidth for a two year commitment in one fell swoop is interesting.
     
  12. maartena

    maartena Hall Of Fame

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    A couple of notes:

    PAC12 has announced it will be broadcasting a LOT more sports. Granted, for the majority of us it is about Football and Basketball, and any other sports really don't exist. :D - But PAC12 will be broadcasting Soccer (M/W) Baseball/Softball (M/W), Field Hockey, Volleyball, Track and Field, Swimming meets, even things like Rowing, Wrestling. - 850 live sporting events this year, with the rights and plans to broadcast another 1440 on top of that in coming years.

    That said, there is going to be plenty of programming for 2 schools per network. It is a VERY bold plan indeed, but they seem to have more content per school than e.g. Longhorn Network who fills up 1 network with a lot less content.

    I would like to suggest however, that we continue PAC12 discussions here:

    http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=205113

    That topic has been running for a while now and deals with PAC12 exclusively, except a few off-topic strays. :D
     
  13. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    A correction. LHN does NOT fill up the channel with content. That is why they dont have much carriage.
     
  14. maartena

    maartena Hall Of Fame

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    Oh I completely understand they need to plan out their resources carefully. What I am saying is however, that given the resources available and which channels are currently NOT carried AT ALL, I think those channels are probably going to be higher on the priority list than channels that ARE already carried, just not yet in high definition.

    Knowing that, I think it is easier to "bump" channels to a "future planned date" if they already exist in SD, as opposed to channels that might contain content that would cause a loss of subscribers.

    The reality is, that PAC12 would lose customers, while not having Comcast Philly for the next 2 years won't lose any customers. (They just won't gain much in the Philly market). Universal Sports not in HD won't lose customers, and I think basic HD will not lose customers. Comcast Sportsnet Houston probably will lose customers, so that is an important one.

    This said, if they have new technology that would allow the addition of the current 4-soon-to-be-5-maybe channels, there might be a lot more that we don't know about technology wise.

    Personally, I think they added the channels most in demand over the last year or so in HD (BBCA and NGW), they added Disney Jr in HD as part of the ViaCom fight, (I think they launched SD quickly with intention to launch HD), and a sports channel with soccer rights. If ION goes live, it will be a well-rounded festivus with something for everyone.

    And with those basic HD channels added, yes, I do believe they need to manage resources carefully, and I believe that the sports additions currently up in limbo are a lot more important to add than channels that already exist in SD.
     
  15. Santi360HD

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    I chimed in on your twitter post !! if that was you semi bashing swanni !!:lol:
     
  16. georule

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    Well, I don't think we'd want to assume some engineer at D* was flipping thru an industry magazine this past March, saw an ad for new encoders, and suddenly yelled out to the room "Hey! Look at this!".

    I've got one presentation from a likely D* encoder vendor talking about this stuff in October of 2010. There's no reason to think that was the beginning of its visibility to D* either.

    Said another way, it's just as credible this "encoder driven functional bandwidth bump" was planned as a midway juice between D12 and D14 since even before D12 launched. Or, if you think that's too early, their willingness to use 20 HD channels worth for "push".

    Maybe it even had something to do with the selection of D14's planned launch date?

    Tho I do agree D* needs to be careful with willy-nilly launching of HD basics just because it has the rights. I suspect --and cannot prove-- they have other rights for HD they've chosen not to exercise yet because of priority concerns.
     
  17. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    I did not say that. I know they have been working on something at least as early as last year. These things take time and still they tested it before they added stuff. This was in plan for a long time. But they didn't start adding in earnest until it was working.

    Do I think they did push too quickly? Yes. But they must have some data that says it is worth it. There has not been an ad campaign for it. Who even knows it exists?
     
  18. georule

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    Geeks like current company aren't the market for "push" tho --all the market for that capability needs to know is go to the Cinema channel and pick something out; let the magic do the rest. There's been plenty of advertising of Cinema. Customers who already have their DVR's hooked up to broadband are geeky enough to perhaps demand to know how the magic works, but it isn't aimed at us in the first place, so why would they feel the need to explain it or market it to us?
     
  19. larry55

    larry55 Legend

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    well ion be up in hd this week.
     
  20. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    All the advertising for cinema says you need Internet, does it not? I'd think they'd advertise to get movies and no Internet needed! A selling point thy have never accented.

    And the magic doesn't work right away. The only test done on here took days to get the movie. If it worked like magic, you'd see far fewer PPV channels in the 100s.
     
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