Effective March 18, Spectrum’s “Broadcast TV Fee” will increase by $3. Customers will have to pay $21 per month just to be able to watch their local, over-the-air television stations. The Broadcast TV Fee has been raised each of the last two summers; most recently, it was increased to $17.99 per month in June 2021. This means that Spectrum’s average surcharge for local, OTA stations is rising an average of $36 per year.
The implementation of 5G wireless technology has created a strain on radio frequency spectrum that is putting the industry at odds with administration agencies, with the FCC stuck in the middle. One analyst compares it to the 1960 black comedy film The Little Shop of Horrors, where a ravenous, human-eating plant can’t be sated. Similarly, telecommunications companies appear to have an endless need for additional bandwidth to provide ever-faster mobile data services.
Charter still values being able to sell traditional video packages alongside its broadband products but CFO Chris Winfrey suggested that a breaking point is coming. Speaking at an Evercore investor event, Winfrey reaffirmed that video is still an in-demand product and that it’s still profitable for Charter. But he warned changes are needed to ensure that his company can continue assembling attractive products that can be packaged for different customers with different budgets.
The microphone maker’s petition argues the wireless microphone community needs clear spectrum now more than ever, as the 600 MHz band has been reallocated to mobile phone use and the DTV repack has moved many TV stations into the 500 MHz spectrum.
The FCC has signed an agreement with the National Science Foundation and the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, the White House’s top communications adviser, to advance spectrum R&D. The move is a nod both to interagency multilateralism and the value of science, two things the previous administration was criticized for downplaying.
One of the most daunting barriers to innovation in local TV news is fear — the danger of driving away viewers who like what you’re doing and don’t necessarily want it to change. By that standard, Spectrum News is taking on a tricky challenge: tinkering with its iconic 24/7 New York City cable news channel, NY1.
A distinctive formula for local news finds a new platform. The Spectrum News App is designed as a “value add” that enhances the value of the company’s broadband service: it’s the first content product to be created for all 28 million Spectrum residential customers, whether they subscribe to its video offerings or not.
As part of Dish Network’s $1.4 billion agreement last week to purchase around 9 million Boost-branded mobile customers from T-Mobile, the company also quietly said it would purchase billions of dollars of additional spectrum. The deal underscores the fact that Charlie Ergen — the chairman of Dish Network and a key architect of the company’s 5G strategy — ostensibly has an utterly inexhaustible desire for spectrum.
Broadcasters are giving new meaning to the phrase “dynamic spectrum access” in arguing that an FCC proposal to free up WiFi spectrum in the 6 GHz band could take away electronic newsgathering spectrum just when a pandemic-sequestered nation needs it most. That came in phone calls last week between National Association of Broadcasting executives and FCC officials.
Policymakers “need to take a fresh look at existing allocations of spectrum, including the allocation of spectrum to broadcasters” to determine if “that spectrum is still needed by the broadcast industry or if it is better used in other areas,” said Jim Ciconni, senior EVP of AT&T at a Washington think tank event.
The FCC’s decision today to expand the use of so-called “white spaces” TV spectrum for unlicensed wireless broadband drew quite a crowd Friday after a unanimous vote to allow for higher power and taller towers to extend the reach of unlicensed uses.
The FCC today adopted new rules to auction and make available quickly and efficiently 280 megahertz of mid-band spectrum for flexible use, including 5G. “Making this critical spectrum available represents another important step to closing the digital divide, especially in rural areas, and secures U.S. leadership in 5G,” the commission said. Today’s action makes a wide […]
The FCC will be making some big spectrum-related decisions Friday (Feb. 28) at its February public meeting that will affect broadcast and cable operators. The commission is scheduled to vote on freeing up 300 MHz of the 500 MHz C-Band satellite spectrum for next-gen terrestrial wireless, in the process repacking satellite operators and their broadcast and cable clients into smaller space and potentially paying those satellite operators billions to exit the spectrum early.
The FCC said it needs $481.59 million to conduct its operations next year, up just 0.3% from the current fiscal year and reflecting an expected boost in revenue from spectrum auction fees. Among the notable lines items in the Fiscal Year 2021 budget plan is a $134.5 million request for spectrum auction authority, an increase of nearly $2 million (about 1.5%) from the current year.
Louis Libin, chairman of Election Wireless 2020, coordinates wireless requirements for broadcasters at the upcoming conventions, debates and election night. He says the repack has made assigning spectrum more challenging than ever, and that broadcasters must temper their expectations relative to past years.
Aerospace and defense industry contractors told the House Energy & Commerce Committee and Communications Subcommittee leadership today (Oct. 29) that they need to be cognizant of the potential for interference with an auction and repurposing of C-Band satellite spectrum for 5G.
As if the last “spectrum reallocation” and subsequent repack hasn’t provided enough drama, there’s another move afoot to further trim broadcasters’ operational resources. This one hasn’t received the notice that the big “reverse auction” commanded, but it has the potential to send TV, radio, and cable system operators scrambling, should the FCC (and wireless providers) have their way.
He will be responsible for engineering elements to the company’s overall domestic and international strategy for spectrum utilization.
Charles Cooper has been named associate administrator of the Office of Spectrum Management at the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, where he will help develop the National Spectrum Strategy mandated by President Trump. Cooper, who comes aboard July 1, was most recently at the FCC, where he was involved in radio frequency enforcement.
Representatives of noncommercial stations tell FCC officials that allowing sales of the educational spectrum could create a “hostile leasing environment.”
The FCC is poised to consider expanding uses for a swath of airwaves to accommodate surging Wi-Fi demand. The agency will vote at its Oct. 23 monthly meeting on proposed rules to open up spectrum in the 6 gigahertz spectrum band to millions of Wi-Fi-connected devices, including smartphones, video game consoles and baby monitors. As much as 1 GHz of spectrum could be opened up for unlicensed use, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a blog post previewing the commission’s meeting agenda.
“Microsoft’s bet seems to be that it’s cheaper to hire slick PR muscle and to try to hoodwink regulators into handing out free spectrum than to buy spectrum like everyone else. As someone whose 600 MHz auction battle scars are still healing, I sure hope they are wrong.”
The new agreements with cable operators means Newsy’s national news programming lineup is on track to be available in about 40 million U.S. homes by the end of 2018, according to owner E.W. Scripps.
Spectrum cable TV subscribers won’t have to give up their MTV anytime soon, as Charter Communications and Viacom have seemingly avoided a carriage dispute that could have knocked several networks off the service while the companies hashed out their differences in the court of public opinion. “Viacom and Charter have reached an agreement in principle,” the two said Tuesday in a joint statement. “Spectrum subscribers will continue to have access to Viacom’s networks, without disruption, while we finalize terms.”
Viacom Inc., parent of networks including MTV and Nickelodeon, launched TV ads this week urging its viewers to call customer service at cable company Spectrum ahead of a deadline that may result in a blackout for 16.6 million customers.
The two station groups’ goal is to promote broadcast spectrum aggregation, innovation and monetization, in anticipation of the adoption of ATSC 3.0. They say they want to include other broadcasters in the effort to compete in wireless data transmission.
The 10-year FCC veteran and recipient of TVNewsCheck‘s first Technology Women to Watch Award in 2013 will head spectrum policy for the trade group under Rick Kaplan.
The Communications and Technology Subcommittee of House Energy and Commerce will hold a hearing on the federal government’s spectrum holdings on Oct. 7, it said Wednesday. It will particularly focus on a bill from Reps. Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.) and Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) aimed at giving the government incentives to give up its spectrum. “State-of-the-art technologies can improve the effectiveness of government systems and make more spectrum available to meet our national broadband needs,” subcommittee Chair Greg Walden (R-Ore.) said in a statement.
NEW YORK (AP) — The Federal Communications Commission said Monday that Dish Network Corp. can’t apply $3.3 billion in small-business credits toward the purchase of airwaves it gained in a government auction. The government sells spectrum to carriers like AT&T and Verizon so they can add more capacity for wireless Internet. Dish is a satellite […]