January 22, 2007 12:28 ET

Americans Score With New HDTV Sets, but Fumble When It Comes to Getting Connected

Experts Predict Many Will Drop the Ball When It Comes to Connecting HD Sets With HD Service

ALEXANDRIA, VA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- January 22, 2007 --While millions of Americans are gathering to watch a picture-perfect football bowl game between Chicago and Indianapolis on their new high-definition (HD) television sets, experts predict that many may fumble when it comes to hooking up the HD programming service that makes it work. According to research conducted by the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM) in December 2006, only 52 percent of HDTV owners subscribe to the HD service needed to experience true high-def viewing. So for many fans, a fancy new HDTV set is just -- a new TV.

CTAM's study further revealed that most HD owners aren't even aware they're missing out on the crystal clear images, vibrant sound and special programming that cable HD service provides. Thirty-four percent of owners who aren't HD subscribers weren't aware they needed to subscribe to a programming service when they purchased their HDTV sets. And, 61 percent of those non-subscribers believe that HD picture quality is the same as a DVD.

"It's surprising the number of Americans who are investing in high-end HDTV sets who aren't getting true high-definition channels," said Char Beales, President and CEO of CTAM. "People are not only missing out on a stunning experience, but a world of HD-only shows, including movies, sports, children's and educational programming and On Demand -- all available with cable's HD service. Plus, cable companies help customers manage the set-up process and demonstrate how to take full advantage of the bells and whistles."

Year round, the cable HD line-up puts viewers in the center of the action by delivering high quality picture with reliable service. In addition, cable television subscribers with HD service can upgrade their service with a cable HD DVR, creating instant replays and offering a new spectrum of choice in the HD arena.

"Cable unlocks the door to a stadium-quality viewing experience, expanding customers' viewing options," said Beales. "This year we hope everyone who's watching any sporting event on an HDTV set is getting the full picture."

In addition to regular season games, tournaments and events, HD enhances the year's greatest sporting events, including:

--  Professional football championship game between Chicago and
--  College basketball's March tournament
--  Golf's biggest event: The Masters
--  Wimbledon tennis championship
Visit for information on HDTV service, DVRs and other products and to see offers from local cable providers on how to complete the pass and score big with an HDTV touchdown this winter.

About CTAM

CTAM, the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing, is dedicated to helping the cable industry grow by advancing consumer and business-to-business marketing excellence, facilitating collaborative marketing initiatives, and encouraging the mastery of new technology-based products. CTAM helps consumers understand the benefits of cable through national initiatives such as Cable Movers Hotline(SM) and CTAM On Demand Consortium. CTAM provides marketing education, information and networking opportunities to its more than 5,000 members, through conferences, consumer research, publications,, a network of regional chapters, and the CTAM Educational Foundation's centerpiece initiative, the CTAM Executive Management Program at the Harvard Business School. In addition, consumers can learn more about the benefits of cable through national CTAM initiatives, such as

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