The short term goal of TCI is to refocus on its core offering and leverage its programming services through digital TV. Digital TV programming provides users with 100 channels (through digital compression techniques) instead of the existing 50 analog channels and has the longterm potential (powered through network upgrades) to have access to 500 channels, and the combination of TV with internet and telephone. This combination is widely referred to as triple-play services. The digital encoder will allow easy access to digital programming through on-screen menus and program listings than can be brosed through remote controls. Subscribers will be able to look for their favourite shows through interactive search menus, and subscribers will be able to order new channels and Pay-Per-View movies. But Subscribers would still be able to stick with their existing programming and will not be forced to upgrade to the full digital package directly. But TCI should persuade subscribers to gradually move over to digital to be able to turn off the digital signal by 2000 (3 years). Why is digital better than analog. As the cost to carry content is rising (e.g. sports channels like ESPN, CNN, etc
) and the competition for the customer is rising through digitial satellite broadcast (DSB). TCI should focus on become the service provider of choice. Choice in television programming (beefing up the number of channels, video on demand, pay-per-view, etc
) and the services provided (telephone and internet in short run). Further this would allow TCI to leverage its investments in programming services such as through Liberty Media. The outright replacement of analog converters to digital converters would effectively put the new digital TV services directly with its current 13.1 million subscriber-base. But deploying digital converters will not be sufficient to deploy triple-play services. Triple play services cover TV, Voice and Internet services. TCI will be required to perform an...
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