One thing not mentioned is that LPTV stations are not part of the 39
month repack schedule. T-Mobile can boot them off their 600 MHz channel
as soon as they're ready to commence operations where an LPTV station
will interfere with T-Mobile.
On 06/29/2017 07:27 PM, Manfredi, Albert E wrote:
T-Mobile to Foot Repack Cost for Displaced Public LPTVs
June 29, 2017
Posted by Deborah D. McAdams
WASHINGTON- T-Mobile has committed to covering the costs for local public TV
low-power facilities required to relocate to new channels in the post-incentive
auction repack, according to PBS and Americas Public TV Stations.
The pair said coverage for as many as "38 million Americans" would potentially
be affected by the displaced operations, though they did not provide specifics, nor is it
clear the T-Mobile support comprises all affected public low-power TV operations, or just
those displaced by T-Mobile's desire to light up the spectrum it won at auction as soon
as possible. (TV Technology has queries pending and will update as information is made
available, but one source indicated that the agreement covers all affected public
low-power TV operations.)
Update, 3:41 p.m. ET: According to an APTS spokeswoman, "There are 384 translators
(Update, 8:03 p.m. ET: both public TV and commercial ) in 33 states serving nearly 38
million people over-the-air being repacked and covered under the T-Mobile grant. Of the
total, roughly 39 translators are in the 'commencement of operations' phase beginning
T-Mobile was the top spender in the incentive auction, taking home nearly $8
billion in airwaves.
The federal legislation establishing the spectrum incentive auction excluded
low-power broadcast facilities and translators form the $1.75 billion fund to
reimburse moving costs for displaced stations. Translators essential for
extending the reach of TV broadcast signals deep into sparsely populated
regions, namely, rural America. As a result, PBS and APTS said, as many as 38
million Americans in rural communities were at risk of losing free over-the-air
access to public television programming and services.
APTS and PBS said the project also means more better broadband in underserved
areas as T-Mobile lights up its extended network.
PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger: "Public broadcasting has been one of America's
greatest and most enduring public-private partnership. We are thrilled that T-Mobile sees
the value that public broadcasting brings to the American people and is helping to ensure
that everyone-regardless of income or zip code-continues to have access to PBS, including
vital emergency alerts and programs that help prepare children for success in
APTS President and CEO Patrick Butler: "As the post-auction repacking process moves
forward, local public television stations are committed to ensuring that all Americans
continue to have free over-the-air access to the local content and services on which our
viewers and their communities depend. America's Public Television Stations are very
pleased that this initiative with T-Mobile will help address one of the most significant
repacking challenges that local public television stations face by providing needed
funding to relocate translator facilities that enable us to provide essential services in
education, public safety and civic leadership to the most rural and remote parts of the
Neville Ray, chief technology officer of T-Mobile: "We're proud to collaborate with
broadcasters across the country as they transition to other channels, and doubly proud to
support local public television's public service mission and help ensure millions of kids
in rural America continue to have access to public television's high-quality, educational
programming. Moves like this will help us expand our network into these underserved areas
and give consumers a new level of wireless coverage and choice."
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai: "I commend PBS, APTS, and T-Mobile for developing a creative
solution to assist millions of TV viewers during the post-incentive auction transition.
The financial assistance provided by T-Mobile will help the many Americans who rely on
public television, especially in rural areas. It will also help expand wireless
connectivity in rural America. Today's announcement is precisely the kind of
cross-industry cooperation we need to ensure a smooth transition for broadcasters,
wireless providers, and American consumers."
National Association of Broadcasters Executive Vice President of Communications Dennis
Wharton: "We are gratified to see T-Mobile embrace the principle that viewers should
not lose service during the repack. We will continue to work to ensure that viewers are
protected during the post-auction transition."
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