AT&T Adds 2 Networks To U-verse

While AT&T and Verizon's new video services struggle with local-government franchise laws, both companies keep adding networks to their respective services. The latest: MTV Networks and BET join AT&T's U-verse television. Recently, U-verse added NFL Network and Discovery Networks U.S.

U-verse is already up and running in San Antonio, Texas. AT&T's intention is to expand to 20 additional markets by year's end. The company's goal is to reach 19 million homes by December 2008.

AT&T distribution agreements include the traditional linear networks and HD network. In addition, MTVN and BET on-demand content will be offered.

Last week, MTV Network struck a deal with Cingular Wireless to provide broadband content to its wireless customers. AT&T has a 60 percent ownership stake in Cingular.

Verizon's FiOS is already available in some markets in California, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Texas, and Virginia. But it's having trouble getting approval by local franchise authorities. Phone companies' video services, such as AT&T's U-verse and Verizon's FiOS, hope that a proposed national TV license will make it easier to gain access to consumers instead of getting approval market by market, the traditional and laborious way.



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