05.24.1999|Corporate

Bell Atlantic Brings Its New TV Service to Pittsburgh, Offering Consumers an Alternative to Cable

Bell Atlantic Brings Its New TV Service to Pittsburgh, Offering Consumers an Alternative to Cable

Residents of Pittsburgh Can Save $200 in Programming and Installation Costs When They Sign Up Before July 11

May 24, 1999

Media contact: Katie Stephan, 703-295-4184
Jim Smith , 973-649-8850

PITTSBURGH - Residents of Pittsburgh who night after night flip through their cable channels searching for something to watch no longer have to settle for commercials and reruns.

Bell Atlantic Video is now providing consumers a real choice in television service by offering more than 210 channels of DIRECTV* programming, digital-quality pictures and CD-quality sound from satellite-industry leader DIRECTV. To launch its service in Pittsburgh, Bell Atlantic Video is offering a $100 discount on installation and $100 worth of coupons for pay per view movies.

"With Bell Atlantic's television service, residents of Pittsburgh have an alternative offering real value for the dollar," said Dick Beville, president of Bell Atlantic Video.

"With the enormous amount of consumer interest in digital satellite television in recent years, Bell Atlantic Video saw a terrific opportunity to offer consumers what our research tells us they want -- more programming choices, easily accessible local channel reception and competitive pricing," said Beville. "Bell Atlantic Video is the answer for consumers looking for an easy route to better home entertainment." Bell Atlantic's complete package includes:

  • Professional installation of the DIRECTV System -- an 18-inch satellite dish, receiver and remote control -- for only $99. This includes installation of a high-quality, off-air antenna to deliver local broadcast channels to all televisions previously hooked up to cable. Installation of the off-air antenna represents a $100 saving from Bell Atlantic's standard installation price of $199.

  • Rental option for set-top boxes -- eliminating up-front equipment costs. For $5.99 a month per set-top box, residents of Pittsburgh can enjoy the technological advantages of a high-end, digital set-top box and remote control without purchase and maintenance requirements.

  • Simplified ordering and billing -- consolidating all programming costs from DIRECTV, and all equipment fees into one, easy-to-read bill from Bell Atlantic Video.

  • Customer service from a leading telecommunications company 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Concurrent with the introduction of Bell Atlantic's television service in Pittsburgh, DIRECTV is offering new subscribers $100 worth of pay per view programming coupons when they sign up for service and the Total Choice* programming package from DIRECTV between May 27 and July 11. Installation and activation of programming must be completed by July 21.

Bell Atlantic customers can choose a variety of programming packages from DIRECTV, the most popular featuring more than 60 top networks and 31 commercial-free music channels for $29.99 per month. They can also choose from a selection of premium movie packages, offering multiple channels from such networks as HBO, SHOWTIME and STARZ!. With all programming packages, customers have access to as many as 55 pay per view choices a day, special event pay per view selections, and a number of professional and collegiate sports subscription packages.

"We hope to change the expectations of television viewers by offering them the best in service, quality and choice," said Beville. "Bell Atlantic Video also offers its television service in the Boston, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. metropolitan areas and in Delaware and New Jersey.

More information on the service is available by calling 1-888-379-2355 toll-free, or by visiting Bell Atlantic's World Wide Web site at www.bellatlantic.com/digitaltv. Certain restrictions apply.

DIRECTV is the nation's leading digital satellite television service with more than 4.8 million subscribers nationwide. The service offers access to more than 200 channels of digital entertainment, including popular networks such as HBO, SHOWTIME, CNN, Disney Channel, ESPN and USA Network.

Located in Reston, Va., Bell Atlantic Video is a subsidiary of Bell Atlantic. Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and information industry. With 43 million telephone access lines and nine million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, market leaders in wireless services and the world's largest publishers of directory information. Bell Atlantic companies are also among the world's largest investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations and investments in 23 countries.

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*DIRECTV and Total Choice are trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc., a unit of Hughes Electronics Corporation. The earnings of Hughes Electronics are used to calculate the earnings per share attributable to GMH (NYSE symbol) common stock. Visit DIRECTV on the World Wide Web at www.directv.com.

INTERNET USERS: Bell Atlantic news releases, executive speeches, news media contacts and other useful information are available at Bell Atlantic's News Center on the World Wide Web (http://www.ba.com). To receive news releases by email, visit the News Center and register for personalized automatic delivery of Bell Atlantic news releases. HBO is a registered service mark of TIME WARNER Entertainment Company, L.P. SHOWTIME is a service mark of SHOWTIME Networks, Inc., a VIACOM Company.

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