DISH Network announced a quarterly loss in subscribers, causing it’s stock price to fall roughly 5%. According to Craig Moffett, analyst with Bernstein research, “it’s the first ever loss of subscribers by a major satellite TV company.”
DISH blame’s the loss on “aggressive promotional offerings by our competition” and “weak economic conditions.”
Also not helping DISH is the loss of their partnership with AT&T who had been bundling DISH service with their “Triple Play” offering which had accounted for roughly 15% of their new subscriber additions the first six months of the year.
From a statement in a regulatory filing by DISH, their “ability to maintain to grow our subscriber base will be adversely affected if we do not enter into a new agreement with AT&T.”
Without that relationship DISH can likely expect their cost of subscriber acquisition to rise.
Not all news is bad for DISH, however. Helped by an increase in programming costs their revenues rose to $336 million, or an increase of 75 cents per basic share and 73 cents per diluted share.
DISH Network haters out there (I hear there may be one or two) will soon have one less thing to complain about as the broadcaster will be the first to broadcast live 1080p beginning on August 1st when it offers I Am Legend in full 1080p.
Not all subscribers will be able to get 1080p broadcasts, but according to DISH anyone with an HD DVD capable of playing MPEG-4 videos will be able to play the 1080p broadcasts thanks to a software upgrade that will be pushed out to these units when the new service goes live.
Competing services are limited to 1080i/720p, so broadcasting in 1080p is a nice point in favor of DISH, but in reality many viewers probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between 1080p and 1080i/720p on an HDTV smaller than 50 inches.
If you’ve been thinking about getting satellite TV through AT&T you might want to hold off for a bit and see how this plays out–Dish Network has announced that AT&T is ending their agreement to bundle Dish Network services with AT&T broadband and phone service (AT&T’s “triple play”).
While this could just be a play for AT&T to negotiate a better deal with Dish Network, it could also mean that AT&T is considering an agreement with DirecTV.
Too early to say how this might impact current customers.
On Monday satellite television provider Dish Network issued press release announcing the addition of 22 new high definition channels to its lineup with Dish Network senior vice president saying “we are excited to extend our competitiveness in HD by enhancing our already comprehensive HD lineup with these 22 channels, bringing our total HD lineup to over 95 channels.”
That’s great, BUT, the very next night they turned off 15 of its Voom HD channels bringing their total to 80.
Pretty damn sneaky. They make a big deal about having nearly as many HD channels as DirecTV, then quietly turn off 15.
When DISH Network lost their appeal in the TiVo lawsuit that claimed DISH violated TiVo patents with their DVR’s they were quick to tell everyone that their DVR software had since been upgraded and no longer violate the patents and that no customers would see a service interruption.
Its true but only part of the story.
The majority of their DVRs no longer have infringing code, the VIP 721, 921, 942, and Homezone 1022 have NOT been updated and can no longer be sold or activated.
Customers that already have one will be okay, but if you’re in the market for a new DISH DVR, do yourself a favor and double-check that the model you’re looking at will be one you can activate.