DirecTV Requests FCC Authority To Share Spectrum with Telesat Canada
DirecTV, an El Segundo, Calif.-based satellite TV provider, has filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for authority to move its DirecTV 5 spacecraft into an orbital slot controlled by Telesat Canada. If the request is approved, the DirecTV 5 satellite would be moved into the Telesat-controlled orbital location of 72.5 degrees West Longitude, allowing DirecTV to expand local-into-local channel service to a minimum of 130 U.S. markets by year-end – a commitment made to the FCC as a part of the agency’s approval of the News Corp [NYSE: NWS] acquisition of DirecTV’s parent Hughes Electronics [NYSE: GMH].
The arrangement with regard to DirecTV 5 is contingent on the successful launch of the DirecTV 7S satellite later this quarter. DirecTV 7S would replace DirecTV 5 at 119 degrees West, freeing up the latter satellite for its move to 72.5 degrees West.