Friday, December 11, 2009

Astro B.yond launched

Astro HD is launched today and known as Astro B.yond.

The good thing is that you need to top up RM20 on your existing subscription package with the HD channel.

More info can be found here:

Astro B.yond launched

KUALA LUMPUR: Astro today launched its Astro B.yond — a multi-phased innovative service starting with the first ever High Definition (HD) broadcast, setting yet another new benchmark in Malaysia’s broadcast industry.

“At 48 per cent penetration of Malaysian TV homes, we are part of 2.875 million homes. It is a privilege we do not take for granted. At Astro, we are committed to innovation in content, technology and customer experience.

We would also like to ensure our customers get the maximum value out of every ringgit they spend with us,” said Astro chief executive officer Datuk Rohana Rozhan.

Incorporating the best in class technologies, the newly launched Astro B.yond offers customers new services which will be introduced in phases starting on Dec 18.

Starting with the first-ever High-Definition (HD) broadcast in Malaysia, Astro B.yond has the potential to change TV viewing experiences with richer colours, picture-perfect clarity and cinematic surround sound. A new and improved Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) designed for better viewer interface will also be introduced.

In 2010, Astro aims to be the first in the world to offer video recording through an external hard drive. With this service, customers can record their favourite programmes and personalise their TV viewing schedules. Astro B.yond will also introduce Digital Video Recording (DVR), Video on Demand (VOD) and IPTV connectivity in phases over the next 24 months.

As Astro B.yond is a major shift in technology, it calls for total revamp in capabilities, hardware and installation. In addition to Astro's delivery infrastructure, customers who wish to experience Astro B.yond and access the HD services have a choice to sign up at an additional service fee of RM20 per month and a commitment of 12 months.

Customers will get the new B.yond box, new smart card, new outdoor unit dish, HD Multimedia Interface (HDMI) cable and new remote control. New set-up installation fee will be waived in exchange for the existing box.

On content, Astro will show three key genres that are recognised as HD content drivers globally - sports, movies and documentaries. Astro will start with four HD channels — Astro Supersport HD, HBO HD, National Geographic Channel HD and History HD on Dec 18, followed by ESPN HD in January 2010.

Sports fans may also get to watch the coming World Cup 2010 in HD. Astro plans to roll out more HD channels, including local content, in 2010. The access to enjoy the HD channels corresponds to the customer’s current package subscription.

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