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AT&T Adds Discovery Networks to U-verse

In one of its biggest programming wins to date, AT&T inked a sweeping deal with Discovery Communications to put popular channels ranging from Discovery Channel to Animal Planet on its U-verse TV and video-on-demand service.

The deal allows U-verse to provide all of Discovery’s U.S. linear TV networks and its HD and VOD offerings. That includes linear TV channels Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Travel Channel, Discovery Health Channel, Discovery Kids, Discovery Times Channel, The Science Channel, Military Channel, Discovery Home Channel, BBCAmerica and FitTV.

U-verse also will offer Discovery’s three U.S. Spanish-language networks -- Discovery en Español, Discovery Kids en Español and Discovery Travel & Living -- and its around-the-clock HD channel, Discovery HD Theater. And on-demand content from Discovery will make its way into the U-verse video lineup.

“We are pleased to announce content agreements with today’s most popular television networks and content providers, including Discovery, designed to deliver a truly revolutionary entertainment experience centered around the consumer," AT&T head of programming Dan York said. “AT&T is delivering a robust and compelling television service, which will include the quality and engaging programming from our great partners at Discovery.”

AT&T recently expanded its market trial in San Antonio to a wide commercial launch in the city, and it indicated that U-verse will next expand to a new 20,000-home development in the suburbs of Houston.

Longer-range, AT&T plans to roll out U-verse service via its Project Lightspeed fiber-optic buildout to reach 19 million homes by the end of 2008. Project Lightspeed extends fiber-optic links either to the home or to neighborhood nodes to offer high-speed-data and IPTV services.