SES Defends Plans for 105 Degrees (1 Viewer)

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Sep 8, 2003
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SES Americom addressed concerns recently raised by DirecTV concerning its proposed DBS service, which suggested the Americom2Home satellite TV offering could interfere with signals delivered by other DBS satellites.

At issue is SES Americom's plan to launch the Americom2Home DBS service at 105 degrees, an orbital location controlled by the Government of Gibraltar. Two weeks ago, DirecTV said SES operations at 105 degrees would interfere with other DBS orbital operations, including its core DBS satellite location at 101 degrees.

In a filing sent to the Federal Communications Commission, SES Americom said interference concerns should be carefully studied and resolved. But the company took issue with DirecTV's claims that DBS satellites must be spaced nine degrees apart, and said DirecTV's efforts targeting the Americom2Home service aim to delay its entry into the business.

SES Americom said there is no specific rule concerning nine-degree separation for U.S. DBS orbital assignments, and FCC rules defer to the International Telecommunications Union for its take on orbital spacing for DBS satellites. "The commission has acknowledged this fact, noting that service into the United States from future entrants such as non-U.S. DBS satellites could result in smaller satellite spacing than the current nine-degree separation between U.S. DBS orbital locations," the company said in its comments.

The company added, "Americom2Home has numerous public benefits. The satellite platform will enhance competition in the market for DBS services, and more generally in the multichannel market."

Earlier in the month, DirecTV said if the SES satellite is deployed, it will interfere with other DBS satellites. "Nine-degree orbital spacing has been the foundation of the U.S. DBS industry since its inception, and billions of dollars have been invested by DirecTV and others to deploy a satellite infrastructure that provides competition to cable monopolies and that extends (multichannel) services to geographic areas un-reached by cable," the company told the FCC.

SES has an agreement with EchoStar for the satellite TV company to use Americom2Home capacity.
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