As part of completing its move to an all-digital network scheduled to be finished in October, Charter Southern California is removing the last remaining analog channels in Long Beach August 20. With Burbank and Glendale to follow suit, the communications company is ultimately requiring customers to have a digital receiver to continue viewing their programming.
To comply with their alterations, residents will have to outfit each television set they own with a Charter-issued digital set-top box or CableCARds, the security devices that permit reception of encrypted digital service. With customer complaints sure to ensue, the company is trying to ease the process on subscribers by making acquisition of the box free.
Vice president of Charter’s Southwest region, John Owen, stated in a press release that the move will not only free up space on the company's network but also increase the quality of the product they’re able to offer its subscribers.
“By removing outdated analog signals, we gain back a tremendous amount of bandwidth in our network,” Owen said. “In the space we previously needed for a single analog channel, we can now provide multiple standard definition digital channels or HD channels. It’s a great opportunity for us to maximize value for our customers.”
The move to all-digital will provide the company the ability to offer 79 new HD offerings in Long Beach, bringing the total number of high definition options to 185 on the Charter network once it’s completed. The digital boxes will also unlock access to Video On Demand for subscribers.
According to the company’s site, as of June 2012, the company had accounted for over 550,000 subscribers in California and within Long Beach, it's one of the few options that doesn't require a satellite dish.
In a press release, Vice President and General Manager for Charter California Jean Simmons said now that Long Beach residents will be converted to digital, they can start enjoying what nearly all of its customers across the state have already had access to.
“More than 93 percent of Charter customers in California have adopted digital devices for at least one television in their home,” Simmons said. “Now, we can give customers in Long Beach, Glendale and Burbank even more of what they want-a superior digital image, better audio and a diverse selection of HD programming.”
To obtain a digital box or CableCARd, customers can visit the company’s website www.charter.com/digitalnow or call 1-888-GET CHARTER (1-888-438-2427) for information.