Published on Save Access (

IL: AT$T gets OK to offer statewide video service

By saveaccess
Created 10/25/2007 - 7:49am

from: Chicago Business [1]

AT&T gets OK to offer statewide video service

Oct. 24, 2007
By Brandon Glenn

(Crain’s) — A state regulatory agency approved AT&T Inc.’s application to offer video service across the state.

The Illinois Commerce Commission’s acceptance of the application is a first. Previously, cable or video companies had to negotiate on a city-by-city basis if they wanted to offer service in Illinois.

That changed earlier this year when a state law took effect allowing video providers to obtain one state-level operating agreement instead.

Citing “competitive reasons,” an AT&T spokesman would not tip his hand about when or where the company would begin offering its U-verse TV service, which is transmitted by phone wires.
Related Article Topics | Related Industry News

“That would be like the Bears giving the Packers their playbook,” he said, revealing only that AT&T plans to roll out the service in Illinois sometime next year.

However, Hoffman Estates cable TV coordinator Bruce Anderson earlier this month told Crain’s that his town has been outfitted for the service and expects to be among the first to get it.

Gary White, communications manager for Wheaton, said his city is neutral on the new law that allows cable or video providers to negotiate at the state rather than city level. Under the previous law, providers were required to offer service throughout an entire community. Now, no such requirement exists, so Mr. White said he feels “apprehensive” that AT&T will offer service only in Wheaton’s wealthier areas.

“If it’s true competition, (service) should be for everybody, not just who AT&T selects,” he said.

An AT&T spokesman said the company will make its next-generation video services available to as many Illinois households as possible, as quickly as possible, said an AT&T spokesman.

"Part of that commitment includes delivering these services to lower-income households," he added.

Source URL: