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Viability of C-Band

Discussion in 'The OT' started by Bigg, Nov 15, 2018.

  1. Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    It's still going to rely on a whole chain of devices and different providers, whereas DirecTV is a system that gets the video right onto your roof without being dependent on anything else.

    1. Rain fade is barely an issue today. It rarely happens, and only for a few minutes at a time.

    2. Rain fade will be less of an issue in 2019 and beyond as DirecTV shuts down MPEG-2 SD and can move some of the major HD sports networks, like your ESPNs, TNT, TBS, TruTV (March Madness), FS1, FS2, and a few major conference channels over to Ku band, which is less susceptible to rain fade than Ka.

    3. If it's that big of an issue, DirecTV could make it easier for commercial customers to get 1m dishes.

    And then what about hotels? DirecTV allows them to offer linear TV in the whole hotel while using a negligible amount of internet bandwidth. Airports?

    Further, I predict some businesses will refuse to put streaming TV on their networks due to security. After the Target breach that was done through an HVAC system, those types of things are moving to 3G and 4G cellular IoT connections, and TV will likely stay on totally isolated systems.

    Many of which have crappy internet because they are in AT&T areas, and AT&T refuses to build out fiber to them, but that's another story. Even then, there are some truly off-grid isolated users, or mobile users with RVs or boats or whatnot.

    They investigated it, and they found no evidence of someone purposefully re-routing the traffic. It was clearly a big oops. But as the internet grows, this is absolutely a valid concern, even if they are accidental in nature.

    I think somebody will keep satellite service around beyond that. There will still be a niche, as long as there is live TV around to watch via the satellite. However, the pay tv market may be significantly consolidated by that point, with far fewer channels, and they may no longer need the entire 99c/101/103c arc, and if they drop locals, and go back to a niche national service, they might go entirely off of one orbital position.
     
  2. dreadlk

    dreadlk Hall Of Fame

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    It’s probably cheaper and more forward thinking for ATT to invest in 5G in areas that they already have the greatest density of subscribers rather than deal with the expense of installers and massive customer service depts, including the massive amounts of service calls. Added major benifit being it also generated cell phone revenue and ISP sales.

    I wish I had you guys optimism but this is the third hobby/work area that I have had crumble due to ever changing technology.
     
  3. Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    What were the first two?
     
  4. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    If your Directv went out "every damn time it rained" your dish wasn't properly aligned. Or somehow every time it rained it was big downpour.
     
    Bigg likes this.
  5. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, the battle over net neutrality is another factor. Right now, since there is no net neutrality, there is nothing stopping Verizon from throttling traffic from Directv to make it more desirable for their customers to get FIOS TV. Or even block it entirely, if they wanted AT&T to pay them for access to their network and AT&T refused. How many FIOS customers have broadband alternatives that are the equal of FIOS? Probably not many, so they'd end up dropping Directv rather than dropping FIOS in that case.
     
  6. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    A larger dish would make almost no difference. Doubling the dish's area adds at most 3 db, but rain fade can attenuate Ka by 50 db or more during a really heavy rain. It would reduce the duration of outages a bit, and maybe prevent a few when the rain is just at the threshold of fade, but that would be worth paying a couple hundred bucks extra for some weird non-standard dish & LNB? It would also be more susceptible to wind damage.

    Effectively you can do this today by getting an Alaska/Hawaii dish (which is more than double the area so should give more like 5 db extra, in theory at least) but no one does for the above reasons.
     
  7. Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    FiOS is a bad example, they have strong broadband competition in 99% of the places that they serve from Comcast, Charter, Cox, or Altice, unlike cable, which often doesn't have much of any reasonable competition over a significant portion of their footprint. Sure, cable doesn't have fast uploads, but that doesn't matter to most people if cable is cheaper or in some other way better.

    Aren't most rain fade events near the threshold? They usually only happen for a few minutes, and very rarely at that. Although nothing much is on TV from 1500-1700 in the summer when the right atmospheric conditions for rain fade most often exist anyway.
     
  8. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    If you ever get a fairly steady rain that is just cutting you out (i.e. signal comes and goes) that's your threshold. Then think how often you get rain events that GREATLY exceed that threshold (like a rain we had here a month ago that dumped 3" in about 20 minutes)
     
  9. AntAltMike

    AntAltMike Hall Of Fame

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    Back in the late 1990s, we used to have a lot of rain fade information available that was based on the Crane Rain intensity model and adjusted to DBS's Ku band frequencies and link dimensions. I'll post a region map for now, and then see if I can find one of my print tables and maybe make time to scan and post it.

    When it was announced that DirecTV would be going to Ka band, where the wavelengths were only 2/3s the length of Ku, it was feared that that small reduction in wavelength would be significant because it got closer to the size of the rain drops themselves. By that time, I no longer had a professional interest in updating my knowledge base and never did find comparable data for Ka attenuation and link failure.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  10. dreadlk

    dreadlk Hall Of Fame

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    C-Band dish business and I also had a pager company. I had both at the same time. The Pager business was the first one killed by cell phones and then came C-Band. At least I saw the writing on the wall with the pager business and got out with most of my money.
     
  11. raott

    raott Hall Of Fame

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    Guess all the schilling for Directv didn’t pay off in the long run.
     
  12. Laxguy

    Laxguy Honi Soit Qui Mal Y Pense.

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    Neither did the pfennigs.
     
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  13. AntAltMike

    AntAltMike Hall Of Fame

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    [​IMG]
     
  14. Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    Oh cool. C-Band is a sad story. Of course virtually everyone still uses C-Band, they just don't know it, whereas pagers... that network is totally dead, right?
     
  15. AntAltMike

    AntAltMike Hall Of Fame

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    Sad for the lenders. I just searched for an article that I had read when it was published back in 1997. Here is as much as I can view without a Wall Street Journal subscription. Can someone with a subscription get the whole story?

    Consumer-Finance Industry Regrets Dishing It ... - Wall Street Journal

    Consumer-Finance Industry Regrets Dishing It Out Big

    Oct 15, 1997 - Jeff BaileyStaff Reporter of The Wall Street Journal ... taken to telling complaining borrowers: "All satellite dealers are scum and will say and do ...

    # # #​

    I spent one week working for a C-band satellite system installation company in a major metropolitan area that was owned by a criminal. They screwed every installer and nearly every customer. After I left, a person who stayed with them said that they had 47 "pullouts" in one month.

    I then went to work for another C-band company in another part of the country. More criminals. More defective installations. I only lasted three days there. Both companies set their masts with less than two bags of pre-mix.


    ..
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  16. AntAltMike

    AntAltMike Hall Of Fame

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    Ah, the good old days.
     
  17. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Those maps are why Directv broadcasts stronger signals in the deep SE and weakest in the SW. Their power curve approximately follows what you've posted.
     
  18. TheRatPatrol

    TheRatPatrol Hall Of Fame

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    Yeah scanning the sky for wild feeds of sports, news and other shows. Good times. :)
     
  19. Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    I didn't even realize all that stuff was going on. I was just referring to the fact that the current C-Band consumer packages only have a few major channels available directly from the source without re-compression.
     
  20. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    $4000+ for the system (single receiver without programming) is a steep price. The lack of major channels is not the beginning of the problems with C-Band. $4000 can go a long way with a smaller dish. Especially with both DBS providers providing free installations with commitment and approved credit. That is two years of DIRECTV's top tier or DISH's top tier with about $1000 left over. 330+ channels according to the DBS providers instead of 24.

    At least the sellers are up front about the costs. 0% if paid of in 6 months at $750 per month. Much better than the open ended ~$60 per month payments referred to in the article AntAltMike linked. (Payoff at that rate in 9 years but the programming ended in one year.) That vs a $200 dish system. I had mine paid off as part of the monthly subscription (monthly bill credits compensating me for buying and installing a dish).
     

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