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DIRECTV Announces Next 24 Markets to Receive High-Definition Local Channels in Spring 2006

Local HD Markets Will Total 36, Representing More Than 58 Percent of U.S. Television Homes

Continuing to widely expand its local high-definition (HD) programming services, DIRECTV, Inc. (NYSE: DTV), the nation’s leading digital television service provider, today named the next 24 U.S. markets that will receive local HD programming.

Beginning in April of this year, DIRECTV will roll out the first of the 24 new markets, offering HD programming from the four primary broadcast networks — ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC. Customers with the appropriate DIRECTV HD receiving equipment, who subscribe to a programming package that includes local channels, will receive both the standard and HD signals at no extra monthly charge.

The 24 local markets to receive HD programming include:

  • Baltimore
  • Birmingham, Ala.
  • Charlotte, N.C.
  • Cleveland
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Denver
  • Fresno, Calif.
  • Hartford, Conn.
  • Indianapolis
  • Kansas City, Mo./Kan.
  • Miami
  • Milwaukee, Wisc.
  • Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Nashville, Tenn.
  • Orlando, Fla.
  • Phoenix
  • Pittsburgh
  • Raleigh, N.C.
  • Sacramento, Calif.
  • Salt Lake City
  • San Diego
  • Seattle
  • St Louis, Mo.
  • West Palm Beach, Fla.

“The expansion of local HD programming is one of the cornerstones of our brand strategy to provide the best entertainment experience for DIRECTV’s customers and sets us apart from our competition,” said Dan Fawcett, executive vice president, DIRECTV, Inc. “With the rollout of 24 new local HD markets, we will offer access to DIRECTV-delivered local HD programming to 58 percent of U.S. television homes. We expect to expand our HD local coverage to even more markets later this year.”

DIRECTV currently offers standard-definition local channels in 141 markets, covering nearly 94 percent of television households in the country, as well as 12 HD local channel markets, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Tampa and Washington, D.C. With the launch of two new satellites — DIRECTV 10 and DIRECTV 11 — in 2007, DIRECTV will have the ability to deliver more than 1,500 local HD and digital channels and 150 national HD channels, in addition to new advanced programming services for customers.

All DIRECTV local HD programming is being transmitted via MPEG-4 AVC, the new standard in digital video compression and advanced modulation that more than doubles the efficiency of DIRECTV’s capacity.

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Customers can receive local HD channels by purchasing the new H20 HD receiver and a satellite dish that has the ability to receive programming from five different orbital locations and Ka-band signals. Through Feb. 28, DIRECTV is offering new and existing customers a $200 mail-in rebate on the purchase of a DIRECTV HD Receiver. (Limit one rebate per account.) Receiving equipment is available at major consumer electronics retailers like Best Buy and Circuit City, and through DIRECTV.

About DIRECTV, Inc.
DIRECTV, Inc. is the nation’s leading digital television service provider with more than 15 million customers. DIRECTV and the Cyclone Design logo are registered trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc. DIRECTV (NYSE: DTV) is a world-leading provider of digital multichannel television entertainment services. DIRECTV is approximately 34 percent owned by News Corporation.

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