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Texas, Alabama, Tennessee Stations Start HD Local News

In a possible rush to go HD in time for the Olympics, three NBC affiliates in the American South have recently jumped into local HD news, apparently bringing the total number of estimated local HD news signals past the century mark.

WSFA-TV, the NBC affiliate in Montgomery, Ala., (Nielsen DMA no. 118) began airing its local news (“12 News”) in 1080i in early August. The station, a Raycom Media property, says it’s the first in its market to make the local leap. It’s using new weather and news sets to take advantage of HD’s added detail and the format’s wider aspect ratio.

Another NBC affiliate, WMC-TV in Memphis, Tenn. (Nielsen DMA. no. 47) also began airing its news in 1080i this month. It, too, was the first in its DMA to go local HD, according to a state-by-state tally compiled by TV Broadcast, a sister publication of TV Technology.

Also making the HD switch is KTSM-TV, the NBC affiliate in El Paso, Texas.