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Cable Technology Feature Article

January 13, 2010

The Switch to Help AT&T provide HD Television Circuits Across 22 States

By Narayan Bhat, TMCnet Contributor

AT&T (News - Alert) has reportedly agreed to provide transport plumbing to help The Switch, a unit of Beers Enterprises Inc, deliver live and on-demand HD programming across AT&T’s 22-state footprint.
Last year, AT&T had signed almost similar contract with The Switch, which provides video images and sound to the broadcast industry, including television networks, local broadcast stations, and producers and distributors of television programming. The earlier agreement with AT&T was to represent their HD VT circuits which are capable of uncompressed HD, SDI, SDTI and ASI transmission.
For US telecom giant AT&T, the agreement is the first step on its way to provide High Definition Video Transport, or “HDVT,” service across more than 130 metropolitan areas. The Switch will use HDVT circuits to transmit HD and Standard Definition content from its video switching facilities in Los Angeles, New York, Washington, D.C., Miami, London and Toronto.
“With the help of AT&T, The Switch is able to offer High Definition circuits to broadcasters at cost-effective rates,” said Scott Beers, president and CEO of Beers Enterprises Inc. “Not only will this help speed the transition to High Definition television, it will also help broadcasters deliver high quality video.”
The Switch has previously used AT&T’s HDVT circuits for transmitting the Michael Jackson Memorial Service on July 7, 2009, from The Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Founded in 1991, The Switch’s customers include domestic and international television networks, common carriers, and local broadcast stations.
In 2003, Beers Enterprises purchased the remaining interest of The Switch from their original partner GlobeCast, a subsidiary of France Telecom (News - Alert). The company has embarked on expansion plans to bring The Switch concept to other domestic and international cities.

Narayan Bhat is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Narayan’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Kelly McGuire