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RCN goes all digital in Chicago, shoots for 100 HD channels

Darren Murph

Starting today, RCN will begin switching to all digital programming in Chicago, Illinois, a full year (and change) before all broadcast channels must do the same. Reportedly, the move will enable the cable provider to reclaim excess spectrum and recreate its cable offerings. More specifically, the 80 channel Signature package will be re-launching with 180 channels for the same price, and while we're not told exactly what new HD additions we'll find, a few newcomers are nevertheless promised. Additionally, subscribers in the area can expect more video-on-demand content and new channel pods which will purportedly "provide customers with the ability to pay only for the programming they want to watch." With all this freed up space, the firm's VP and General Manager Tom McKay has boldly proclaimed that it hopes to "make good on the promise of offering approximately 100 HD channels in the future," but sadly, "future" is as detailed as it got. 'Course, some users will need to grab a digital converter box or CableCARD to continue receiving service, but you already knew that, now didn't you?

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