LITTLETON, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 21, 1999--
EchoStar's New DISHPlayer Provides Consumers With Digital Video
Record and Playback, Internet and E-Mail, Video Games, Enhanced
Satellite TV Viewing...at Lowest Price in Industry
EchoStar Communications Corp., is offering a special introductory price of $199 for its newest EchoStar satellite receiver, DISHPlayer™, a savings of $300 from the MSRP of $499.
Developed with Microsoft® WebTV Network™ Plus service for
satellite, DISHPlayer offers television viewers the world's first
Internet and satellite TV receiver. DISHPlayer is currently being
shipped to nearly 20,000 DISH Network™ retail locations nationwide
and will be available in stores in June. This introductory offer of
$199 is effective May 21 until Sept. 30, 1999, and is not combinable
with any other offer from DISH Network or WebTV Networks.
Previously announced as the EchoStar Model 7100, DISHPlayer is a
combined service and product that revolutionizes the TV viewing
experience by integrating EchoStar's DISH Network digital satellite
television programming with the Internet TV experience from WebTV
Networks, including a TV pause capability, digital video recording
(available later this year), advanced electronic program guide (EPG),
broadband data delivery and video games.
"WebTV Networks and EchoStar are leading the charge in bringing
truly interactive television to consumers and at the lowest price
possible," said Charlie Ergen, CEO and chairman of EchoStar.
"DISHPlayer is simple to use and will change the way consumers watch
"We are making television history once again," said Steve
Perlman, president and co-founder of WebTV Networks. "By combining the
high-speed digital video and data capability of DISH Network
satellites, the WebTV Networks' Internet service, and a massive disk
drive with hours of digital video storage, the DISHPlayer brings an
unprecedented level of choice, control, and quality to the TV viewing
experience. We believe that history will look back upon this product
as the first 21st century television receiver."
New TV Features
DISHPlayer is the world's first satellite receiver with a
built-in ultrafast, 8.6 gigabyte hard drive capable of recording and
playing back simultaneously full-quality digital video. The disk drive
makes possible a number of enhanced digital TV features, including TV
Pause ("freezing" a TV show for up to 30 minutes and resuming when the
viewer is ready to watch again), digital video recording (automatic
recording of several hours of high-quality digital video) and
downloadable video games via satellite. The video recording feature is
planned to be available later this year as a WebTV™ Plus and
EchoStar service upgrade by satellite.
DISHPlayer offers a rich EPG that provides new features such as
the TV Search capability, giving viewers the power to easily find
subjects of interest from the detailed TV show listings. This advanced
EPG also links Internet content with programming found in TV Listings,
providing easily accessible program-related information at the touch
of a button. TV Listings provides programming information up to seven
days in advance, while the TV Recent feature saves thumbnail pictures
of the last six channels viewed. Content creators will be able to
design enhanced programming, delivered via satellite to all types of
broadcast receivers that comply with a proposed specification by the
Advanced Television Enhancement Forum (ATVEF). Broad industry adoption
of the ATVEF specification will enable television viewers to enjoy
interactive television programming on a wide variety of compliant
receivers and accelerate the market for interactive television
products and services.
EchoStar's Newest Satellite Receiver
DISHPlayer is a state-of-the-art DISH Network satellite receiver
that provides customers with access to over 300 channels, including
broadcast networks, sports, international and pay-per-view
programming, in crystal-clear digital video and CD-quality audio and
with Dolby Digital output included. This set-top box features a
printer port for printing out TV Listings of upcoming shows or e-mail
messages, and provides parental blocking capabilities, allowing
parents to control access to web sites and TV programs. In addition,
the picture-in-picture capability lets viewers surf the web and watch
TV simultaneously. They can automatically program their video cassette
recorder to record any show they choose, up to seven days out, with
the press of a button on the remote control. DISHPlayer can also be
upgraded by the DISH Network and WebTV Network service at any time via
satellite. The DISHPlayer system includes a remote control and
wireless keyboard. DISH Network programming begins at $19.99 per month
for 40 of the most popular all-digital satellite TV channels.
The WebTV Plus service for satellite is a broadband-enhanced
version of the WebTV Plus service, the leading Internet TV offering
worldwide. The WebTV Plus service provides an easy-to-use, robust
Internet experience via a 56K modem connection, offering up to six
e-mail accounts and child-protection features. The DISHPlayer supports
popular multimedia e-mail features in the WebTV Network service,
allowing a subscriber to easily plug in a camcorder and send pictures
and audio clips through e-mail. The WebTV Plus service for satellite
will offer a variety of games such as You Don't Know Jack™, which
can be updated weekly by satellite. The WebTV Plus service for
satellite will be offered as part of the $199 introductory offer for
$24.95 per month.
EchoStar Communications Corp., includes three interrelated
- DISH Network™ is EchoStar's state-of-the-art DBS system that offers customers over 300 channels of digital video and CD-quality audio programming, fully MPEG-2/DVB compliant hardware and installation.
- EchoStar Technologies Corporation (ETC, formerly HTS™-- Houston Tracker Systems, Inc.), designs, manufactures and distributes DBS set-top boxes, antennas and other digital equipment for the DISH Network and various international customers that include ExpressVu Canada and Telefonica's Via Digital system in Spain. ETC also provides uplink center design, construction oversight and project integration services for customers internationally.
- Satellite Services provides the delivery of video, audio and data services to business television customers and other satellite users. These services include satellite uplink, satellite transponder space usage, and other services. Satellite Services also administers SKY VISTA, a direct broadcast satellite service offering up to 27 channels of popular digital satellite television programming to viewers in Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. territories in the Caribbean.
DISH Network currently serves over 2.3 million customers. DISH
Network is a trademark of EchoStar Communications Corporation. HTS is
a trademark of Houston Tracker Systems, Inc. DISH Network is located
on the Internet at: www.dishnetwork.com
CONTACT: EchoStar Communications Corp. Judianne Atencio, 303/723-2010 firstname.lastname@example.org or Marc Lumpkin, 303/723-2020 email@example.com