Dish Network Company History

DISH Network is the satellite broadcasting brand name of EchoStar Communications Corporation, an international and publicly held company headquartered in Englewood, Colorado.

Humble Beginnings

Established in 1980, EchoStar was the vision of now Chairman and CEO, Charlie Ergen along with his wife, Cantey and friend, James DeFranco. With the company's focus on customer service and cutting-edge equipment, it wasn't long before EchoStar quickly began to grow.

In 1986, EchoStar introduced the world's first UHF remote control and just one year later, filed for a Direct Broadcast Satellite (DBS) license with the FCC. They were granted that license in 1992. EchoStar soon turned its focus to providing its own DBS service and in 1995, realized that goal with the launch of EchoStar I from Xichang, China.

And the DISH Network brand name was born.

DISH Network Today

Ten years and eight satellites later, EchoStar and DISH Network continue to pursue that same groundbreaking leadership that has set them apart from the competition. In 1999, DISH Network unveiled the DISH 500, the world's first and only 500-channel satellite TV system. Just a few months later, DISH Network does it again by releasing the new HDTV Satellite TV Receiver in January of 2000. By 2004, DISH Network had become the first satellite TV service to offer local channels to all 50 states as well as Washington, D.C. and it was DISH Network who said thanks to their customers by giving away 1,000 complete high definition television systems.

Today, DISH Network remains the lowest all-digital TV choice in America and most recently, introduced the DISH Player-DVR 942, the first multi-room satellite TV receiver that can record in high definition.

But then, that's nothing new. EchoStar has been full of firsts. Each year, EchoStar and DISH Network have reaffirmed their standing by realizing new levels of service and cutting-edge technology. Partnering with communication masters such as SBC and Earthlink, DISH Network has been able to offer even greater discounts and services in the form of bundled packages. Ranked No. 1 in Customer Satisfaction among Cable/Satellite TV Subscribers by J.D. Power and Associates, DISH Network reached their 10 millionth customer milestone in 2004 and boasts an impressive satellite network with the capacity to provide hundreds of channels of digital video, audio and data services via DISH Network service to homes, businesses and schools throughout the United States. With over 20,000 employees, EchoStar and DISH Network remain dedicated to the delivery and advancement of Direct Broadcast Satellite worldwide.

DISH Network of Tomorrow

What's on the horizon for EchoStar and DISH Network?

The satellite industry continues to grow and expand, creating new opportunities and exciting, innovative technologies. High definition television and digital video recording are just two great examples of how far a little ingenuity can take you. DISH Network recognizes this unlimited potential in satellite broadcasting and continues to look ahead, exploring new services and programming choices for its customers. With the passage of the Satellite Home Viewer Extension and Reauthorization Act of 2004 (SHVERA), DISH Network anticipates the possibility of distant high definition TV network channels within the next few years.

Whatever the future holds, there are two things you can be sure of: it's bound to be exciting and EchoStar and DISH Network will continue to lead the pack.

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