ESPN HD names carriage agreements

Last Sunday’s launch of ESPN HD was made available to potentially millions of cable TV viewers with high-definition TV sets has reached affiliation agreements that provided carriage of its 24/7 high-definition simulcast service on Insight Communications, Cox Communications, the National Cable Television Cooperative (NCTC), Service Electric Cable TV Inc., Utilacom and Comporium Communications systems. The all-sports network said it will announce additional agreements over the next several weeks.

ESPN HD debuted Sunday, March 30 at 6:30 with Baseball Tonight, live from Anaheim, Calif. ESPN HD’s goal is to offer the largest selection of sports programming available in HD and will feature live, high-profile telecasts including games from Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, the National Hockey League and the NCAA Women's Basketball Championships.

To view the broadcasts, consumers must subscribe to the local MSO’s digital cable service and rent a special set-top box capable of decoding and displaying the HDTV signal. Most operators have said their premium HD service will cost about $10 per month.

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