Updated from 8:49 a.m. EDT

Satellite television company

EchoStar Communications

(DISH) - Get Report

said its loss in the first quarter narrowed as the Dish Network added more than 300,000 new subscribers.

EchoStar posted a loss of $97 million, or 20 cents a share, compared with a loss of $170 million, or 36 cents a share, in the same quarter a year ago. The company's results included $58 million in noncash accounting charges. Excluding these charges, the company's loss totaled $39 million.

Quarterly revenue rose 28% to $1.10 billion from $862 million last year. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial/First Call had been looking for $1.13 billion in revenue. The company's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose to $178 million from $51 million a year ago. EBITDA is the preferred measurement of performance for the media industry.

The company's Dish Network now has 7.16 million subscribers, a 25% increase from the same quarter a year ago. EchoStar is still seeking regulatory approval for its acquisition of

Hughes Electronics

(GMH)

, a deal which would unite the two largest satellite television providers.

Shares of EchoStar were falling about 4% to $26.58 after closing at $27.61 Wednesday.