StarBand Talks Directly to Dish Dealers

Internet-over-satellite provider StarBand Communications Inc. said Friday it
has launched an online registration program to allow the company to deal
directly with satellite retailers who had previously sold StarBand under a
wholesale program with EchoStar Communications Corp.

EchoStar spokesman Marc Lumpkin confirmed Friday that EchoStar has altered
its prior relationship in dealing with retailers who sell the StarBand service
to consumers.

'The wholesale model EchoStar was utilizing with Starband was not economical
for us,' Lumpkin said.

EchoStar continues to have an investment in StarBand. And consumers can still
access both StarBand and EchoStar services under a single satellite dish.

Lumpkin said that EchoStar's proposed merger with Hughes Electronics Corp.
represents the best solution for providing affordable, two-way satellite
Internet access to American consumers because the companies would be able to
draw upon economies of scale and invest in newer technologies.

StarBand said in a press release that it would start shipping equipment
directly to dealers starting April 15. Retailers can register at