InvestorsJanuary 25, 2000
Scientific-Atlanta to Supply Charter Communications with 20,000-mile Upgrade Including New Optical Transport Products As Rollout of Interactive Digital Services Ramps Up
-- Charter’s deployment initiatives also include new Explorer 3000 set-tops --
ATLANTA – Scientific-Atlanta today announced multi-faceted agreements with Charter Communications to supply equipment and set-tops as Charter’s rollout of digital interactive services gains momentum. The agreements, which add to prior orders from Charter, include commitments for 20,000 miles of plant upgrades, introduction of innovative new optical products, and purchases of 126,000 Explorer® 2000 and Explorer 3000 digital set-tops during the first half of this year.
The new agreements, valued at more than $100 million, expand Scientific-Atlanta’s existing relationship with Charter and cover several major deployment initiatives:
20,000 Mile Upgrade
This 20,000 miles of network upgrade is part of the initial phase of Charter’s three-year plan to upgrade 135,000 miles of cable plant. More than three-fourths of the 20,000 miles will use Scientific-Atlanta’s advanced GainMakerÔ broadband amplifier platform, which increases RF network bandwidth to 870 MHz at no price premium over 750 MHz. Scientific-Atlanta will also provide space-efficient, modular Continuum® equipment for 10 headends.
In addition to taps, passives RF amplifiers, and headend equipment, this portion of the upgrade will include deployments of Scientific-Atlanta’s latest fiber optic products to enable delivery of digital interactive services over long distances. For primary transport ring, Charter will deploy Prismaä Digital Transport technology, enabling the carriage of all forms of multimedia information over efficient Sonet digital ring. To carry multimedia traffic deeper into their network, Charter will use
Prisma 1550 DWDM technology in both the forward and reverse path. And, to further improve the reverse path efficiency and performance, Charter will use Scientific-Atlanta’s innovative bdrä technology.
Scalable bdr reverse path technology, coupled with Prisma DWDM, enables efficient delivery of large amounts of multimedia traffic to multiple markets for interactive services such as Internet TV, video on demand, e-commerce and telephony. Charter is implementing products containing the bdr and DWDM technology at multiple hubs in Simpsonville, S.C., Hammond, La., and Janesville, Wis.
Explorer Interactive Digital Set-tops
Charter plans to purchase 126,000 Explorer digital set-tops during the first half of this year. Approximately three-fourths of these will be Scientific-Atlanta’s new Explorer 3000 set-top, which doubles the processing power and memory of the Explorer 2000 set-top. These key features enable faster processing for video and applications, high resolution graphics (640 by 480), and memory for multiple downloaded applications (such as e-mail, Web browsing, and games) to be resident in the digital set-top at the same time. The Explorer 3000 also offers local storage alternatives.
To date, Charter has received more than 76,000 Explorer® 2000 set-tops and installed Scientific-Atlanta’s digital interactive networks in 17 of its cable systems. Charter currently offers Scientific-Atlanta’s digital interactive services to nearly 1 million subscribers in these systems.
“As we continue to upgrade our networks, we intend to deploy the best available technology that gives us the flexibility to introduce a full range of new interactive services,” said John Pietri, Charter’s senior vice president of engineering.. “Scientific-Atlanta brings us flexible, cost-effective, leading-edge solutions that enable us to deliver new services to more customers over longer distances and make more efficient use of the network. Scientific-Atlanta’s technology leadership, combined with our long-standing relationship with them, made Scientific-Atlanta a logical choice.”
“Charter’s aggressive network decisions place it in the forefront of where cable technology is going,” said Jim McDonald, president and CEO of Scientific-Atlanta. “From headends to homes, Charter has chosen to take advantage of Scientific-Atlanta’s latest advances in network design, fiber optics and set-top capabilities. We’re delighted to be Charter’s source for digital interactive networks.”
Charter Communications (Nasdaq:CHTR) is a Wired World™ company offering a full range of traditional cable television services. The company has also begun to offer services including digital cable television, high-speed Internet access and paging and is introducing interactive video programming. All of these services are important steps toward the realization of the Wired World vision where cable’s ability to transmit voice, video and data at high speeds will enable it to serve as the primary platform for the delivery of new services to the home and workplace. Charter is the fourth largest operator of cable television systems in the United States, serving approximately 6.2 million customers, after giving effect to a pending acquisition. The chairman of Charter Communications is Paul G. Allen. Jerald L. Kent is the company’s president and CEO. More information about Charter can be accessed on the Internet at www.chartercom.com.
Scientific-Atlanta, Inc. (NYSE:SFA) (http://www.scientificatlanta.com) is a leading supplier of broadband communications systems, satellite-based video, voice and data communications networks and worldwide customer service and support.
“Forward-looking statements,” as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, may be included in this news release. A variety of factors could cause Scientific-Atlanta's actual results to differ from the anticipated results expressed in such forward-looking statements. Investors are referred to Scientific-Atlanta's Cautionary Statements (Exhibit 99 to the Company's most recent Form 10-Q), which statements are incorporated into this news release by reference.
For Further Information:
|Peggy Ballard||David Doolittle||Anita Lamount|
|Scientific-Atlanta||Ketchum Public Relations||Charter Communications|
|770-236-7871||404-287-2000 ext. 200||314-543-2215|
Prisma, Gainmaker and bdr are trademarks and Explorer and Continuum are registered trademarks of Scientific-Atlanta, Inc.