Unfortunately, there is no way to remove the black bars on the bottom and top of the picture when set on standard definition. The reason why we have the black bars on there is because that is the way the broadcaster is displaying the picture, and we provide the picture to you in it's natural form.
The zoom features only work on high definition.
If your TV has a zoom feature or aspect/picture ration setting, you can have your TV zoom in to remove those black bars.
If you encounter any issues with your service or equipment, I recommend checking out our Troubleshoot & Resolve solutions to help diagnose the issue.
*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Although it is now apparently true the zoom feature doesn't work if you use standard definition, don't be fooled by their claim that they can not help it unless you pay for HD. I have used the zoom feature in standard definition for the last 7 years until they removed it only "yesterday!" I woke this morning to a crappy, stretched viewing experience whereas I prefer Zoom level 2 for all of my viewing. The result is, if you don't pay for HD, you get the substandard stretched picture they allow you to get. Not the picture you "could" get had they not just removed the zoom feature. I am EXTREMELY dissatisfied with these changes. Including the low-end interface for OnDemand that use to show only on my old style CRT TV. As of yesterday, they took away the awesome OnDemand interface from anyone using only Standard Definition. VERY TACKY!!!
It is true that you need HD for the zoom to work. It is NOT TRUE that you need to subscribe to HD for the zoom to work.
THe HD you DO NEED is an HD TV connected to the STB via HDMI or component cables and the STB aspect ratio set to one of the HD options.
The zoom does expand in both directions. It is different than some settings on TVs. It is accessed by the zoom button. But, not directly. The button brings up a menu that grew like Topsy & you need to select zoom befre you can start selecting the amount.
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.