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Europe: Sky, Sony Team Up to Promote HD

European satellite broadcaster Sky (or BSkyB) and Sony announced plans late this month to co-market HD products and services, and will provide discounts for new customers purchasing Sony HD hardware and Sky set-top boxes.

The two firms are joining forces in an attempt to be among the early entrants in the HD wars gearing up in Western Europe, where cable is in the earliest stages of HD rollout plans, and broadcasters such as the BBC are laying down tracks for their own gradual build-out. Sony, for its part, has told various Asian publications that it is starting to see concrete sales results from its global flat-screen HD and ED units, which it introduced later than most of its chief competitors.

Sky plans to introduce a few HD channels in the first two or three quarters of 2006.