DBS Beats Digital Cable in Study


Digital-cable customers are more likely to churn to direct-broadcast
satellite than the other way around, according to results of a research study
released Thursday by the Satellite Broadcasting & Communications

In consumer telephone surveys conducted in the first quarter of 2002 for the
SBCA by The Taylor Research & Consulting Group Inc., 21 percent of
digital-cable customers expressed an interest in switching to DBS, compared with
5 percent of DBS subscribers who said they would consider leaving for digital
cable. Of DBS customers polled, 57 percent had subscribed to cable in the

As in several independent surveys, DBS outscored cable in customer
satisfaction in the SBCA 2002 Consumer Market Research report. In it, DBS scored
a 68 percent approval rating on the subject of value for the money, with analog
cable scoring 37 and digital cable scoring 36.

DBS also outscored analog and digital cable on signal-transmission quality
and making customers feel valued, the SBCA said.

'Despite the hopes and prayers of the cable industry that digital cable would
be the killer application that would slow consumer defections to DBS, these
studies confirm that DBS maintains a sizable advantage in the most important
customer categories -- value, quality and service,' SBCA president Andy Wright
said in a press release.