US TV : MSNBC to go HD by June

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319px-MSNBC_logo.svg MSNBC, NBC’s 24-hour news channel that competes with News Corp’s Fox News and Time Warner’s CNN, has announced that it will be broadcasting in HD 1080i on June 29.

“Broadcasting in HD is only going to help us build on the great success we’ve had so far this year, and will give viewers what they’ve been asking for, a full high definition broadcast of MSNBC,” president of MSNBC Phil Griffin said in a press statement.

However, being late in the game when broadcasting in HD, it is unknown if MSNBC will stick to the broadcasting in 4:3 – with HD having an additional “sidebar” like sister channel CNBC, or will it go into full 16:9 – which would be similar to CNN.

As well, details on who will be carrying MSNBC is currently unknown.

According to the press release, MSNBC HD will be using the existing HD infrastructure that has already been in place on NBC News. Since October 2007, the network has been broadcasting in two studios that have already been ready to broadcast in HD.

Full press release after the jump.

MSNBC will begin telecasting in 1080i High Definition on Monday, June 29. The announcement was made today at the Cable Show in Washington, D.C., by MSNBC President Phil Griffin.

"MSNBC is in the best competitive place its ever been, beating CNN in primetime last month and continuing incredible growth," said Griffin. "Broadcasting in HD is only going to help us build on the great success we’ve had so far this year, and will give viewers what they’ve been asking for, a full high definition broadcast of MSNBC."

For the first time ever, MSNBC beat CNN in weekday primetime for the month of March in both total viewers and Adults 25-54. MSNBC was also the number one cable news network among younger viewers, Adults 18-34, in primetime in March, and in the morning. In March, MSNBC also beat CNN at 8 p.m. among both total viewers and A25-54 with "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," at 9 p.m. in A25-54 with "The Rachel Maddow Show," and 6-9 a.m. in A25-54 with "Morning Joe" for the first time since August 2001.

Building on the NBC News HD infrastructure already in place, MSNBC launches 1080i High Definition utilizing two full HD capable control rooms, integrated HD graphics, and new HD commercial integration master control and distribution systems. Since October of 2007, MSNBC has been telecasting from two HD-ready studios.

Built on the worldwide resources of NBC News, MSNBC defines news for the next generation with world-class reporting and a full schedule of live news coverage, political analysis and award-winning documentary programming — 24 hours a day, seven days a week. MSNBC’s home on the Internet is msnbc.com. Msnbc.com delivers a fuller spectrum of news. Drawing on its award-winning original journalism, NBC News heritage, trusted sources and Microsoft’s advanced technologies, the site presents compelling, diverse and visually-engaging stories on the consumer’s platform of choice. Nielsen Online reports more than 44 million unique visitors for January 2009, making msnbc.com the number one news site, ahead of Yahoo! News, CNN, ABC, CBS, and Fox News.