CNN launches in HD

CNN is now transmitting an HD feed, making it the first American news network to broadcast in HD. Most people won’t be able to see it just yet because the cable companies aren’t carrying the HD feed.

CNN’s shows from New York, which include American Morning and Anderson Cooper 360 will be available in HD; shows from Atlanta and Washington will be shot in SD and upconverted. Wolf Blitzer fans will need to wait until the Washington studios are upgraded to see Blitzer in HD glory.

Most field video — e.g., the news — will still be in SD. Select documentaries will be produced in HD.

Given that CNN’s air is filled with politicians, how important is this? I’m not sure. As I type this, I see Senator Richard Shelby on screen. I don’t really need to see him in HD. There are definitely some stories that will benefit from HD, but it’ll be a while before the field reports are in HD. In the mean time, we can study every imperfection on the anchors’ faces.

This morning CNN has been using a gratuitous shot from Myrtle Beach, S.C., to show off the HD capability. Too bad we can’t see it.

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About Rakesh Agrawal

Rakesh Agrawal is Senior Director of product at Amazon (Audible). Previously, he launched local and mobile products for Microsoft and AOL. He tweets at @rakeshlobster.
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