Eagan Lowers Estimates For Dish

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Based on some of AT&T’s third-quarter results for its satellite TV customers, Collins Stewart analyst Tom Eagan Thursday lowered his subscriber estimates again for Dish Network.

In his note, Eagan wrote that his prior third-quarter estimate for Dish Network, a projected gain of 20,000 subscribers, was “too optimistic.” Now, he estimates that the satellite provider will actually report a subscriber loss of 30,000 customers in the third quarter, after posting a 25,000–subscriber loss in the second quarter.

For the fourth quarter, Eagan now expects Dish Network to gain 30,000 subscribers, revised down from his previous estimate of 90,000.

Eagan lowered his projections for Dish Network after citing AT&T’s third-quarter results Wednesday, and its loss of satellite TV subscribers. From June 30 to Sept. 30, the end of the third quarter, AT&T has seen a drop of 53,000 customers for the Dish Network and DirecTV satellite service it resells, to 2.182 million from 2.235 million. 

Also on Thursday, Dish Network announced it had added high-definition local channels in six markets: Columbia-Jefferson City, Mo.; Des Moines-Ames, Iowa; Lincoln and Hastings-Kearney, Neb.; Omaha, Neb.; Quincy-Hannibal-Keokuk, Ill.; and Waco-Temple-Bryan, Texas.

The satellite provider now offers HD local channels in 76 markets reaching 72% of U.S. TV households.

Dish Network also said Thursday that will begin transmitting its MPEG-4 delivery system to consumers in 21 additional markets in the eastern half of the United States. Now, consumers who sign up for Dish Network in 52 markets will receive all standard and HDTV programming in the MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding Standard. In August, Dish Network became the first pay-TV provider to offer all-MPEG-4 service.

The new 21 markets include: Abilene-Sweetwater, Texas; Atlanta; Birmingham (Anniston and Tuscaloosa), Ala.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Columbia-Jefferson City, Mo.; Des Moines-Ames, Iowa; Florence-Myrtle-Beach, S.C.; Ft. Myers-Naples, Fla.; Huntsville-Decatur (Florence), Ala.; Jackson, Miss.; Joplin-Pittsburg, Mo.; Lincoln and Hastings-Kearney, Neb.; Memphis, Tenn.; Mobile-Pensacola (Fort Walton Beach), Fla.; Omaha, Neb.; Quincy-Hannibal-Keokuk, Ill.; Sherman, Texas/Ada, Okla.; South Bend-Elkhart, Ind.; St. Louis; Topeka, Kan.; and Waco-Temple-Bryan; Texas.

The first 31 markets launched are: Baltimore; Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas; Boston; Chicago; Charlotte, N.C.; Cleveland; Columbia, S.C.; Detroit; Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, Mich.; Green Bay, Wis.; Greensboro, N.C.; Greenville-New Bern-Washington, N.C.; Hartford, Conn.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Lansing, Mich.; Madison, Wis.; Milwaukee, Wis.; Minneapolis, Minn.; Nashville, Tenn.; Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, Va.; New York; Providence, R.I.; Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Fla.; Philadelphia; Raleigh, N.C.; Richmond, Va.; Tampa, Fla.; Washington, D.C.; West Palm Beach-Fort Pierce, Fla.; and Wilkes Barre-Scranton, Pa.

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