Disney Invests in Digital

WASHINGTON — Walt Disney Co. announced Tuesday that it will invest in NxtWave Communications, a privately held Langhorne, Pa., firm developing technology for digital television.

Disney (DIS) said its investment “reflects its overall commitment to the success of the nation’s transition to digital television, and specifically, its commitment to improving the quality of over-the-air reception of the digital television signal.”

Disney wouldn’t specify the amount of its investment. Congress ordered that broadcasters convert from analog to digital signals by the year 2006, but a loophole that extends the deadline if fewer than 85% of the nation has purchased televisions capable of receiving digital signals is expected to delay the compliance for years.

Disney’s ABC network owns and operates 10 television stations. NxtWave has no relation to the wireless telecommunications firm NextWave Telecom Inc., which is attempting to reorganize from bankruptcy.

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