KVH TracVision A7 Enables Mobile DIRECTV Customers
to Receive Live Local News, Traffic, Weather and Sports
EL SEGUNDO, Calif., Aug. 23, 2006 – Recognizing the growing interest among American motorists who want the same DIRECTV entertainment experience in their cars that they have in their homes, DIRECTV is now delivering to car video screens live local news, weather, traffic, sports and other local entertainment programming.
Local broadcast channels via DIRECTV are now available to mobile customers on the open road within the continental United States to vehicles that have been equipped with a TracVision A7 mobile satellite TV system, launched today by KVH Industries, Inc. DIRECTV will provide mobile customers their local broadcast channels within the designated market areas where it already offers them to home viewers. Local channels availability may vary by market. DIRECTV delivers local programming in 142 markets, representing 94 percent of U.S. television households.
DIRECTV’s TOTAL CHOICE® Mobile with local channels package, created exclusively for mobile customers with a low-profile automotive TracVision system, is available for $44.99, and offers more than 185 channels. To receive local channels in their car, DIRECTV customers must purchase a new TracVision A7 satellite TV system, which includes an integrated GPS unit and new 12-volt receiver jointly developed by DIRECTV and KVH.
The mobile local channels offering is part of a larger strategy by DIRECTV to target the more than 20 million U.S. vehicles expected to have in-vehicle passenger video systems by 2011, according to the leading analyst firm Frost & Sullivan.
“We are delighted to be able to offer local broadcast programming on a DMA basis and to extend the connection that viewers have to their local broadcaster, to the mobile consumer. With consumers’ growing demand to watch news and entertainment services whenever and wherever they want, the in-vehicle market has come to represent the next frontier in live digital multichannel entertainment,” said Daren Benzi, vice president, Sales Development and Strategy, DIRECTV, Inc. “This new development symbolizes DIRECTV and KVH’s continuing efforts to innovate and provide the best of the DIRECTV television experience to mobile consumers. With our new receiver technology and KVH’s new TracVision A7 with GPS, DIRECTV is now able to offer its mobile customers the benefits of live local news, traffic, weather, sports and other important information.”
In addition to giving its customers access to local news and information on the road, DIRECTV’s new service offering gives local programmers greater participation in the expanding live mobile media market.
KVH’s TracVision A7 is a low-profile in-motion satellite TV system designed for passenger vehicles and brings more than 185 channels of live, all-digital DIRECTV programming and commercial-free XM Radio music into automobiles. Using patented hybrid phased-array technology, KVH’s TracVision systems, available to car owners since September 2003, are now offered by hundreds of retailers nationwide, as well as participating Cadillac dealerships.
DIRECTV TOTAL CHOICE® Mobile, the world’s first dedicated in-car programming package, was launched in August 2004 in collaboration with KVH and is still the only satellite TV package created for use in automobiles. KVH has been supplying mobile antennas to bring DIRECTV service to boat and RV owners since 1995.
“More and more U.S. motorists now consider their vehicle as an extension of their living room, and, like at home, are demanding live entertainment and information over DVDs and prerecorded content,” explained Ian Palmer, KVH’s executive vice president for satellite sales. “That trend, combined with the phenomenal growth of in-vehicle entertainment systems – more than 52 percent of full-size SUVs and 40 percent of luxury SUVs and minivans among 2005 and early-release 2006 models have in-vehicle video screens according to J.D. Power & Associates – suggest that live, in-car satellite TV is the next must-have vehicle technology.”
The November 2005 report by J.D. Power & Associates also concluded that more than 60 percent of SUV owners and 50 percent of minivans owners want passenger entertainment in their next vehicles.
About DIRECTV, Inc.
DIRECTV is the nation’s leading digital television service provider with 15.5 million customers. DIRECTV, and the Cyclone Design logo are registered trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc. DIRECTV (NYSE: DTV), a world-leading provider of digital multichannel television entertainment, is approximately 39 percent owned by News Corporation Ltd.
About KVH Industries, Inc.
Middletown, RI-based KVH Industries, Inc., is a leading provider of in-motion satellite TV and communication systems, having designed, manufactured, and sold more than 100,000 mobile satellite antennas for applications on boats, RVs, trucks, buses, and automobiles. Winner of the prestigious General Motors Innovative Design Award, CES Innovation Award, 21 National Marine Electronics Association “Best Product” awards, and a finalist for the Automotive News PACE Award, KVH’s mission is to connect mobile customers with the same digital television entertainment, communications, and Internet services that they enjoy in their home and offices.