Midcontinent’s Digital Upgrade Begins in Yankton, Spearfish, Bowman and West Fargo
Sioux Falls, SD November 23, 2010 — Midcontinent Communications is currently upgrading their Basic Cable channel lineup (channels 23 – 99) to a digital signal in Yankton and Spearfish, SD, and in Bowman and West Fargo, ND, and surrounding communities. Before the upgrade is complete, customers will need to connect older televisions (those not equipped with internal digital QAM tuners) to digital equipment from Midcontinent in order to view Basic Cable channels 23 and above. Limited Cable customers will not be affected; channels 2-22 will still be available in analog after the upgrade.
“These changes will help us bring new services to our customers and prepare us for future technology,” said Senior Vice President of Public Policy Tom Simmons. “By converting these channels to digital delivery, we will have more bandwidth available to add HD, a greater selection of On Demand programming, and faster Broadband speeds for all of customers. The initiative will eventually touch most all of our service areas throughout the Dakotas and Minnesota in 2011.”
All customers in the upgrade area will receive a letter announcing the upgrade. Eligible customers have the option to receive up to two Digital Adapters at no cost from Midcontinent. Digital Adapters will need to be connected to any analog televisions that are not equipped to receive the digital signal by February 1, 2011. If a customer decides not to connect their television to digital equipment, they will still be able to view the Limited Cable channels.
“We are scheduled to start shipping the Digital Adapter kits to customers in the coming weeks,” Simmons said. “The Digital Adapter is very small — about 4 x 5 inches — and can be easily attached to the back of the television, out of sight. Most customers are eligible to get two Digital Adapters at no cost. They will not be charged for leasing them – however, these devices do remain the property of Midcontinent and are not transferrable. Customers need to return any unused Adapters and also turn them in when services are disconnected.”
Midcontinent customers can visit a dedicated website at 123free.midcocomm.com, call 1.877.886.5107, or visit a Customer Service Center to activate the Digital Adapter, order more Adapters, or if they have questions about the upgrade.
Simmons says it is important that customers do not wait to install and activate their devices.
“We have experienced some delays in other markets because customers wait too long. It is to their advantage to follow the instructions and get this done as soon as possible and well in advance of the upgrade completion so they can continue to enjoy their favorite programming. We have put together basic self-installation instructions that are easy to understand and have an installation tutorial video on our website. We don’t anticipate that many customers will need us to come out to install these.”
Additional adapters may be leased from Midcontinent for $2/month or customers can choose a Digital/HD Receiver or a DVR which will provide more features such as access to On Demand programming, Digital Music, and the Interactive Program Guide.
Over the next few months, Midcontinent will hold local events to help customers understand what will happen with the upgrade. Trained representatives will be on hand to demonstrate how to order, install, and activate the adapters.
Communities affected by Midcontinent’s digital upgrade scheduled for completion by February 2011:
Yankton, SD Area
Includes: Gayville, SD; Meckling, SD; Vermillion, SD; Yankton, SD
Spearfish, SD Area
Includes: Belle Fourche, SD; Boulder Canyon, SD; Central City, SD; Deadwood, SD; Lead, SD; Spearfish, SD; Sturgis, SD; Whitewood, SD
Bowman, ND Area
Includes: Bowman, ND; Hettinger, ND; Reeder, ND; Rhame, ND; Scranton, ND; Belfield, ND
West Fargo, ND Area
Includes: Arthur, ND; Buffalo, ND; Casselton, ND; Dilworth, MN; Fargo, ND; Frontier, ND; Harwood, ND; Horace, ND; Hunter, ND; Leonard, ND; Mapleton, ND; Moorhead, MN; Oakport Township, MN; Oxbow, ND; Reiles Acres, ND; Sabin, MN; West Fargo, ND