InvestorsOctober 28, 2002
Charter to Launch Video on Demand in 9 More Markets; Rollouts Boost Total VOD Deployments to 21
ST. LOUIS, Oct 28, 2002 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Solidifying its role as a leader in interactive television, Charter Communications Inc. (Nasdaq:CHTR) plans to launch its video on demand service in nine additional markets by the end of this year, a move that will give the company a total of 21 markets with the innovative and convenient service.
The nine new markets are: Allendale, Mich.; Fond du Lac, Wis.; Jackson, Tenn.; Janesville, Wis.; Kennewick, Wash.; Kingsport, Tenn.; Madison, Wis.; Manchester, Tenn.; and St. Peters, Mo.
"Video on demand gives our customers an unprecedented level of convenience and control over their entertainment time," said Diane Schneiderjohn, Charter senior vice president of marketing and programming. "Video on demand displays the power and capability of our broadband network, and we're aggressively moving ahead with these launches in order to put this service in front of more and more customers."
With video on demand, which is available to Charter Digital Cable(R) customers, a movie or special program can be selected at any time from hundreds of titles through the cable television system. Customers can stop, start, pause, rewind and fast-forward the program like they were using a VCR.
Ms. Schneiderjohn said these launches are part of Charter's overall strategy to bring more on-demand services to more of its customers across the country. Charter is currently deploying subscription video on demand in St. Louis and Greenville/Spartanburg, S.C. and has plans to roll out free on demand content from Mag Rack in four markets by the end of this year. "We've built one of the most sophisticated networks in the country to deliver a growing menu of robust, value-added services to our customers," she said.
Charter is using the MediaHawk(R) Broadband VOD System from Concurrent Computer Corp. (Nasdaq: CCUR) in five of these new VOD markets. They are: Allendale, Mich.; St. Peters, Mo.; and Fond du Lac, Janesville, and Madison, Wis. With these additions, Charter will be using Concurrent equipment in 11 of its markets.
Charter is using nCUBE Corp.'s Gigabit Ethernet solution for video on demand using the company's n4X enhanced video server. Those four markets are: Kennewick, Wash. and Kingsport, Jackson, and Manchester, Tenn. By the end of the year, Charter will be using nCUBE equipment in 10 markets.
Video on demand service is a standard part of Charter Digital Cable service and requires no additional equipment. Plus, there's no additional monthly fee. Customers only pay for the actual movies and programs they order through video on demand. Prices for video on demand programming range from 99 cents for children's programming to $3.99 for a recent movie. Prices are comparable to the local video store.
With video on demand, Charter customers will have instant access to current and classic Hollywood movies, events, children's titles and Spanish-language programs.
Ms. Schneiderjohn said a video on demand customer who starts a movie but then must stop it for whatever reason has 24 hours to resume the program and finish it. Plus, just like a videotape, a customer can watch a feature as many times as possible until the viewing period expires.
Using an on-screen guide, video on demand customers can browse available titles, list movies and programs alphabetically, by movie category or genre, and watch a preview. "Plus, we've built this service with control options to help parents set guidelines as to what their children are able to watch," she said.
About Charter Communications
Charter Communications, A Wired World Company(TM), is among the nation's largest broadband communications companies, currently serving more than 6.7 million customers in 40 states. Charter provides a full range of advanced broadband services to the home, including cable television on an advanced digital video programming platform marketed under the Charter Digital Cable(R) brand and high-speed Internet access via Charter Pipeline(R). Commercial high-speed data, video and Internet solutions are provided under the Charter Business Networks(TM) brand. Advertising sales and production services are sold under the Charter Media brand. More information about Charter can be found at www.charter.com.
CONTACT: Charter Communications, St. Louis Media: Andy Morgan, 314/543-2217 email@example.com or Analysts: Mary Jo Moehle, 314/543-2397 firstname.lastname@example.org