Cablevision Goes High-Def

Cablevision Systems Corporation is the latest television provider to jump on the HDTV bandwagon. The twist here? Cablevision will deliver HD from a geosynchonous orbit.

On September 30, the New York–based cable company announced that on October 15 it would launch a high-definition satellite broadcasting service intended to compete against DirecTV and EchoStar's DISH Network. The company's Rainbow DBS (direct broadcast satellite) operation will offer 39 HDTV channels and 88 channels of legacy format programming. Subscription fees are still to be determined.

Cablevision began its satellite operation in July of this year, making it the nation's first cable operator to expand to the sky. The company expects to ride the coming wave of consumer acceptance of HDTV as prices for receivers, displays, and recording devices continue to drop.