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DBS Chat Godfather
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FCC Approves MVDDS

In a decision that satellite TV interests have been anticipating for a long time, the Federal Communications Commission finally gave its OK for spectrum-sharing between small dish services and proposed wireless offerings in the same Ku-Band frequency.

On Tuesday, the commission formally authorized Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Services (MVDDS) under the existing fixed service allocation in the 12 GHz band. The FCC said the move will allow for the entrance of new competition in the multichannel marketplace.

Auctions are part of the MVDDS mix approved by the FCC. As part of its efforts, the commission adopted a geographic licensing scheme and, in the event multiple applications are filed for a specific area, will assign licenses via competitive bidding.

As part of its decision, the FCC dismissed pending applications from Northpoint Technology and its Broadwave business, Pegasus' PDC Broadband Corporation and Satellite Receivers Ltd. for terrestrial use of the 12 GHz band.

Any entity will be allowed to bid on the spectrum, including DBS providers, under the FCC's MVDDS move. However, dominant cable operators will be prohibited from acquiring an "attributable interest" in an MVDDS license for a service area where significant overlap is present, the FCC said.

Since the spectrum-sharing issue surfaced several years ago, satellite interests have been fighting the MVDDS proposal, concerned that the technology will interfere with satellite signals.

From SkyReport, reprinted with permission.

SkyREport
 
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Good for DBS...

The new authorization includes restrictions on interference with existing DBS services.
Bad for Northpoint...

'But the statute does not support exempting this spectrum from auction, nor does it grant Northpoint the exclusive privilege it seeks.'
 

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Hall Of Fame
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1,660 Posts
I thought it quite interesting that D* and or E* can bid for this spectrum, hummm! Could be an alternative to more spotbeams for lil maby? FCC did the smart thing and did not give Northpoint the free ride they wanted and included proper restrictions to prevent interference with DBS. This could provide competition for cable and NEW E* if merger gets approved.
 

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Legend
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I wonder if there is any requirement that a licensee of the new MVDDS must utilize the bandwidth?

Is there anything to prevent DBS licensees from licensing this spectrum simply to protect their customers from interference?

I would think that would be considered anti-competitive. IMO, there ought to be some kind of rule to prevent this. If a DBS operator wants to buy this spectrum, at least make them do something with it. It could be quite useful, for example, to meet must-carry obligations and/or provide complete local service.

Also, if they choose to retransmit local channels, will new MVDDS companies be subject to must-carry, and if so, under the cable rules or the DBS ones? Looking at the limited bandwidth, I would guess the DBS rules might be applied.
OTOH, it would be quite a trick for these companies to simply install local VHF/UHF antennas for their customers (which would be completely allowed as they are an OTARD) and then they wouldn't even have to deal with must-carry nor retransmission consent!
 

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Hall Of Fame
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Hey, couldn't the DBS providers purchase rights in a city and then offer locals via terrestrial delivery? This could be good for DBS. Also, a competitor in big markets would be nice too. But my question is how does this differ from the many now defunct multichannel microwave tv operations?
 

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Hall Of Fame/Supporter
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"Hey, couldn't the DBS providers purchase rights in a city and then offer locals via terrestrial delivery?"

Yep, this would be an especially smart move to provide loca and regional programmming fully integrated with DBS from sats.
 

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Legend
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309 Posts
Originally posted by lee635
Hey, couldn't the DBS providers purchase rights in a city and then offer locals via terrestrial delivery? This could be good for DBS. Also, a competitor in big markets would be nice too.
It's also what DirecTV & Eddie Hartenstein wanted to do quite some time ago. Provide locals via a digital terrestrial method and integrate it with the receiver.
 
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