Top 10 MSOs Embrace Powell DTV Plan

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The nation's top 10 cable operators Wednesday embraced the voluntary
digital-TV-transition plan sponsored by Federal Communications Commission
chairman Michael Powell.

The industry's decision to endorse the plan was conveyed in a letter to
Powell from National Cable & Telecommunications Association president Robert

'I applaud the cable industry for its leadership in helping us to deliver on
the promise of digital television for the American people. I am pleased that the
cable companies have embraced my challenge with solid commitments, and I look
forward to similar strides by the other industries in the coming weeks,' Powell
said in a prepared statement.

In the letter, Sachs said the cable operators planned to comply with key
provisions of the plan, including that cable systems with 750 megahertz of
channel capacity would carry up to five high-definition-TV signals from
broadcasters (commercial or noncommercial) or cable networks.

The MSOs would meet this commitment by Jan. 1 in the top 100 markets on
systems with more than 25,000 subscribers, Sachs added.

'The cable initiative . together with the other voluntary industry actions
suggested by you on April 4, should provide an important boost to the DTV
transition,' Sachs told Powell.