What are DISH / Echostar's plans for launching new satellites?

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satellitedas

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Do you know of DISH / Echostar's plans for new satellite launches? I know DirecTV has one planned over the next couple of years. But, I am surprised that DISH / Echo don't. Instead, they seem to be leasing from Telesat and Ciel. I don't understand why they would not launch their own birds!

Thoughts?
 
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rocatman

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First it should be noted that Dish launched two satellites in 2010, E-14 to 119 W and E-15 to 61.5 W. Regarding future launches, QuetzSat-1 is suppose to be launched to the 77 W slot in the third quarter of 2011. 77 W is a Mexican DBS slot so the permanent satellite there has to be a Mexican satellite but Dish has provided a lot of the financing for its construction so Dish's role is more than just leasing it. The 72.7 W slot is a Canadian DBS slot and although Dish and DirecTV were allowed to use their satellites at that location, Telesat has to build and put their own satellite there in a certain time period. The same is true for the 129 W DBS slot which is alos Canadian. The financing of the Ciel-2 satellite at 129 W was similar but perhaps not to as great extent as QuetzSat-1. Dish is scheduled to launch the E-16 satellite to 61.5 W in 2012. It will be a large spotbeam satellite and it is suppose to be launched on a Zenit launch vehicle by SeaLaunch. Dish has two other launch options with SeaLaunch between 2012 ans 2014. One of these could go to 86.5 W but my guess is that these will both be "Expansion Band" or "reverse DBS" satellites and Dish has license to 5 slots, most are very close to their current regular DBS slots.
 
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satellitedas

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Thanks!

What about all the Ka slots that they have? I know they have some (minimal) Ka payloads at 85, 105 and 121. But, do they have any plans to bring them to use fully?
 
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Mr Tony

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Dish uses 85W for a IPTV system
105 they sublease transponders to companies to do news/sports uplinks. But most of the time its vacant. There is a Macy's internal store demo channel for training...but mainly its a slate on that satellite.
121 they still have some channels on there for business customers but do sublease TP's for sporting events.
 
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rocatman

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I believe all of these are Ku band slots not Ka band.
 
bobvick

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Nimiq 5 launched at 72 degrees west in September of 2009. So it is new as well. Dish has leased the whole bird from Telesat Canada.
 
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rocatman

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After further research, Dish has use of both Ku band and Ka band at some of these slots. I believe Dish subleases the Ka band at 85 W to Wild Blue, a satellite internet service provider.
 
D

DishSubLA

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Do you know of DISH / Echostar's plans for new satellite launches? I know DirecTV has one planned over the next couple of years. But, I am surprised that DISH / Echo don't. Instead, they seem to be leasing from Telesat and Ciel. I don't understand why they would not launch their own birds!

Thoughts?

DirecTV is also leasing satellite slots from others, as is Dish. I think Dish leasing some satellites (the birds) reflects Dish's long term plans of not needing them in the coming years (although the lease is for the full 15 years) and may represent a savings in costs, but these leased satellites are built to Dish requirements/specs for primarily Dish's needs, so it is really more of financial legerdemain that provides Dish with pretty much the same satellite had they owned it. The failed launch of AMC 14 is but one good example: although built and owned by AMC, it really was built customized for Dish. Keep in mind that Dish Network owns some satellites while Echostar owns the rest. Charlie is the spreadsheet king, and he is always finding ways to be more efficient. There is NOTHING wrong with leasing these satellites as they are built to suit Dish's needs.

Although Ciel 2 at 129 is a Canadian satellite leased by Dish, the bird has several spot beams that were designed for US coverage as per Dish's needs. The Canadian Govt. wouldn't allow a US sat at it's location (the Canadian Govt. is very protective of Canadian assets and "culture" to the point of being rudely anti-USA), while Mexico has allowed a US sat to be used at its slots. So, leasing a bird at a DBS Canadian slot was the ONLY solution and the Canadian govt. stipulated that the 129 slot MUST be returned for Canadian use for the people of Canada at a later date.

The Ciel 2 at 129 works out well as DBS power allowances has advantages, financial and technical, one being that the Canadian 129 slot is only 10 degrees from a Dish owned slot and satellite allowing for an elegant reflector solution of 3 LNBF's looking at 110, 119, and 129 for the Western Arc. It doesn't get much better than that, and it was a coup for Dish Network to secure the Canadian slot on Canada's terms. Leasing, payments over time can often be the better financial strategy for many households, as well. It isn't always best to spend all the dough, reducing liquidity just so one can "buy", especially if the long-range plan is NOT to need them, and this is DirecTV's plan, IMHO, as well, regarding the slots they lease.

Dish does in fact have satellites planed for launch. One is supposed to be this year, failed AMC 14's replacement at 61.5. I believe another launch to follow for the primary 119 position. and another the following year, 2012. I believe Dish stated in a quarterly conference back in 2009 that there were to average one satellite launch per year for the next 5 years, from 2009. Oh, yeah, they have one bird ready for launch and more on order. Don't worry about a thing. Dish will be fine. But the AMC 14 failure was a setback and is primarily why we don't have RSN's 24/7, IMHO, and the root of current challenges in the Eastern Arc. AMC 14 was an extremely sophisticated (steerable spots) and capable satellite with TONS of efficient capacity. Alas, it was lost. But things will improve for the EA not too long from now.
 
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rocatman

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DirecTV is also leasing satellite slots from others, as is Dish. I think Dish leasing some satellites (the birds) reflects Dish's long term plans of not needing them in the coming years (although the lease is for the full 15 years) and may represent a savings in costs, but these leased satellites are built to Dish requirements/specs for primarily Dish's needs, so it is really more of financial legerdemain that provides Dish with pretty much the same satellite had they owned it. The failed launch of AMC 14 is but one good example: although built and owned by AMC, it really was built customized for Dish. Keep in mind that Dish Network owns some satellites while Echostar owns the rest. Charlie is the spreadsheet king, and he is always finding ways to be more efficient. There is NOTHING wrong with leasing these satellites as they are built to suit Dish's needs.

Although Ciel 2 at 129 is a Canadian satellite leased by Dish, the bird has several spot beams that were designed for US coverage as per Dish's needs. The Canadian Govt. wouldn't allow a US sat at it's location (the Canadian Govt. is very protective of Canadian assets and "culture" to the point of being rudely anti-USA), while Mexico has allowed a US sat to be used at its slots. So, leasing a bird at a DBS Canadian slot was the ONLY solution and the Canadian govt. stipulated that the 129 slot MUST be returned for Canadian use for the people of Canada at a later date.

The Ciel 2 at 129 works out well as DBS power allowances has advantages, financial and technical, one being that the Canadian 129 slot is only 10 degrees from a Dish owned slot and satellite allowing for an elegant reflector solution of 3 LNBF's looking at 110, 119, and 129 for the Western Arc. It doesn't get much better than that, and it was a coup for Dish Network to secure the Canadian slot on Canada's terms. Leasing, payments over time can often be the better financial strategy for many households, as well. It isn't always best to spend all the dough, reducing liquidity just so one can "buy", especially if the long-range plan is NOT to need them, and this is DirecTV's plan, IMHO, as well, regarding the slots they lease.

Dish does in fact have satellites planed for launch. One is supposed to be this year, failed AMC 14's replacement at 61.5. I believe another launch to follow for the primary 119 position. and another the following year, 2012. I believe Dish stated in a quarterly conference back in 2009 that there were to average one satellite launch per year for the next 5 years, from 2009. Oh, yeah, they have one bird ready for launch and more on order. Don't worry about a thing. Dish will be fine. But the AMC 14 failure was a setback and is primarily why we don't have RSN's 24/7, IMHO, and the root of current challenges in the Eastern Arc. AMC 14 was an extremely sophisticated (steerable spots) and capable satellite with TONS of efficient capacity. Alas, it was lost. But things will improve for the EA not too long from now.

There's a lot of good information in your post but there are also a few things that beg to be corrected. First, all the spotbeams on Ciel-2 are for use in the U.S. and the Canadian government stipulation for on the 129 W DBS slot was that at least 50% of the capacity had to be offered for Canadian use prior to launching the satellite. Since a major portion of the Canadian population has little or no line of sight for 129 W, there wasn't any Canadian interest in using this slot. Folks in the northeast U.S. have problems with 129 W and it only gets worse the farther north one goes. In addition, since Dish sells their receivers to the only satellite TV provider that uses DBS Bell TV, there may have been a deal that gave Dish use of the entire 129 W slot. In fact Dish has a deal with Bell TV for the 72.7 W slot since Bell TV has the lease with Telesat for the Nimiq 5 satellite at 72.7 W and Dish subleases from Bell TV.

AMC-14 was redesigned after the satellite manufacturer couldn't get FCC approval to use the 105.5 W DBS tweener slot. It did have steerable CONUS beams so that it could be used at other Dish slots but I do not believe it had spotbeams. The E-15 satellite was the replacement for AMC-14 and the E-16 satellite will augment/replace E-12 aka Rainbow-1. I also believe Dish doesn't offer HD RSNs 24/7 because their priority is on HD locals. The new requirements of providing a certain percentage of the local markets with all their HD channels by certain milestone date is also making Dish cautious about dedicating bandwidth to HD RSNs 24/7.
 
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chainblu

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It is my understanding as well that AMC-14 was CONUS only.
 
Hall

Hall

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Instead, they seem to be leasing from Telesat and Ciel. I don't understand why they would not launch their own birds!
If you were to guess, what would you say a satellite costs to design/build/launch and then operate for the lifetime of the satellite ? I fail to see what's wrong with leasing, by the way.
 
D

DAVEGTESTR

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Jan 19, 2004
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There's a lot of good information in your post but there are also a few things that beg to be corrected. First, all the spotbeams on Ciel-2 are for use in the U.S. and the Canadian government stipulation for on the 129 W DBS slot was that at least 50% of the capacity had to be offered for Canadian use prior to launching the satellite. Since a major portion of the Canadian population has little or no line of sight for 129 W, there wasn't any Canadian interest in using this slot. Folks in the northeast U.S. have problems with 129 W and it only gets worse the farther north one goes. In addition, since Dish sells their receivers to the only satellite TV provider that uses DBS Bell TV, there may have been a deal that gave Dish use of the entire 129 W slot. In fact Dish has a deal with Bell TV for the 72.7 W slot since Bell TV has the lease with Telesat for the Nimiq 5 satellite at 72.7 W and Dish subleases from Bell TV.

AMC-14 was redesigned after the satellite manufacturer couldn't get FCC approval to use the 105.5 W DBS tweener slot. It did have steerable CONUS beams so that it could be used at other Dish slots but I do not believe it had spotbeams. The E-15 satellite was the replacement for AMC-14 and the E-16 satellite will augment/replace E-12 aka Rainbow-1. I also believe Dish doesn't offer HD RSNs 24/7 because their priority is on HD locals. The new requirements of providing a certain percentage of the local markets with all their HD channels by certain milestone date is also making Dish cautious about dedicating bandwidth to HD RSNs 24/7.

Well I was hoping that there would be HD. RSN's by April this year. I have patiently waited this time as well. Dual systems for baseball are costly. I wish upon wish for 3 years that DISH gets MLB and all HD RSN's. Since Frontier phone co. Area people can now get free Directv through the end of the year, unless there is a HDRSN evolution at DISH, I will either dump or get locals, perhaps Play. pkg from DISH. I can blu-ray movies to make up for lost HBO's. Anybody on RSN'S by baseball season?
 
dangue

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I also believe Dish doesn't offer HD RSNs 24/7 because their priority is on HD locals. The new requirements of providing a certain percentage of the local markets with all their HD channels by certain milestone date is also making Dish cautious about dedicating bandwidth to HD RSNs 24/7.

I think you can add in there the disparity in space between EA and WA. Dish needs to start the conversion of Western Arc over to MPEG4 as soon as possible to gain bandwidth. It's been speculated that they would start the transition for two plus years now, but they're still dragging their feet. It's clear they're going to need the additional space from such a conversion to satisfy the ever growing HD demands of customers (more nationals, more premiums, 24/7 HD RSNs, all HD locals,etc.)
 
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satellitedas

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Thanks for that reply. It was very helpful. You mention that "they have one bird ready for launch and more on order." Can you elaborate a bit on the ones that are on order? Thanks again!

(And a rookie question: is RSN = regional sports network?)
 
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satellitedas

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Thanks for that reply. It was very helpful. You mention that "they have one bird ready for launch and more on order." Can you elaborate a bit on the ones that are on order? Thanks again!

(And a rookie question: is RSN = regional sports network?)

Dish does in fact have satellites planed for launch. One is supposed to be this year, failed AMC 14's replacement at 61.5. I believe another launch to follow for the primary 119 position. and another the following year, 2012. I believe Dish stated in a quarterly conference back in 2009 that there were to average one satellite launch per year for the next 5 years, from 2009. Oh, yeah, they have one bird ready for launch and more on order. Don't worry about a thing. Dish will be fine. But the AMC 14 failure was a setback and is primarily why we don't have RSN's 24/7, IMHO, and the root of current challenges in the Eastern Arc. AMC 14 was an extremely sophisticated (steerable spots) and capable satellite with TONS of efficient capacity. Alas, it was lost. But things will improve for the EA not too long from now.
 
M

Mr Tony

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(And a rookie question: is RSN = regional sports network?)

yes. RSN is regional sports network
 
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satellitedas

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Nothing wrong with leasing. (Case in point: outside of US, almost all DTH service providers lease.) Here is where I am coming from: (a) they clearly have a lot of orbital slot assets, (b) they have launched own satellites in the past, but (c) lately they have been leasing. So, does that mean (i) their orbital slot assets are not ideal or are at risk, or (ii) is it a temporary shift in strategy towards leasing while they build their own, or (iii) something else?

If you were to guess, what would you say a satellite costs to design/build/launch and then operate for the lifetime of the satellite ? I fail to see what's wrong with leasing, by the way.
 
D

DishSubLA

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Thanks for that reply. It was very helpful. You mention that "they have one bird ready for launch and more on order." Can you elaborate a bit on the ones that are on order? Thanks again!

(And a rookie question: is RSN = regional sports network?)

Echostar XVI, last I read press reports has completed construction and testing and is being, if not already, delivered for launch for what was supposed to be a March launch date, but these launch dates can be pushed back for a variety of reasons, but the bird should go up--assuming no problems--no later than the 2nd quarter of this year for the 61.5 slot. I do believe another bird is in construction from my memory of press reports that I termed on order, and I believe Dish/Echo have intentions of possibly another order or possibly try to re-purpose Echo XII, unless I missed something and they either sold it or did whatever with it. Some one here might know.
 
D

DishSubLA

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There's a lot of good information in your post but there are also a few things that beg to be corrected. First, all the spotbeams on Ciel-2 are for use in the U.S. and the Canadian government stipulation for on the 129 W DBS slot was that at least 50% of the capacity had to be offered for Canadian use prior to launching the satellite. Since a major portion of the Canadian population has little or no line of sight for 129 W, there wasn't any Canadian interest in using this slot. Folks in the northeast U.S. have problems with 129 W and it only gets worse the farther north one goes. In addition, since Dish sells their receivers to the only satellite TV provider that uses DBS Bell TV, there may have been a deal that gave Dish use of the entire 129 W slot. In fact Dish has a deal with Bell TV for the 72.7 W slot since Bell TV has the lease with Telesat for the Nimiq 5 satellite at 72.7 W and Dish subleases from Bell TV.

AMC-14 was redesigned after the satellite manufacturer couldn't get FCC approval to use the 105.5 W DBS tweener slot. It did have steerable CONUS beams so that it could be used at other Dish slots but I do not believe it had spotbeams. The E-15 satellite was the replacement for AMC-14 and the E-16 satellite will augment/replace E-12 aka Rainbow-1. I also believe Dish doesn't offer HD RSNs 24/7 because their priority is on HD locals. The new requirements of providing a certain percentage of the local markets with all their HD channels by certain milestone date is also making Dish cautious about dedicating bandwidth to HD RSNs 24/7.

I appreciate your corrections (why didn't you respond first :)) and forgot about the new sat already there at 61.5. My memory failed me on AMC 14 as I recall that it had spots according to press reports, but sometimes the press gets it wrong or I get it wrong from my memory, but I believe you. Echo XVI will go to 61.5 to augment (at least I got that right) as you said. Also, I later realized that the new bird at 119 is already there, so that was a goof, too.

As for 24/7 RSN's (here's my memory again) I believe Charlie addressed this on a Chat some time ago ( almost 2 years ago?) saying that it would be a few years out, after when they "launch a number of new satellites" before RSN's would go 24/7. It is a bandwidth problem but one they had planned to solve by 2012 even with HD must carry as an additional burden. They had a plan to do it all. However, with recent events at 77, who know what will transpire regarding RSN's 24/7.
Thanks again for the clarifications that's what makes the forums great.

I should add that I have stopped putting links to on-line press reports for a very long time now as there is a company actively suing people who post such links on forums such as this. All they do is scour internet forums looking for such things. They can do this under the DMRA and they have succeeded in forcing just plain working folk PAY to settle the suit. They sue even without the newspaper's or on-line press entities cooperation. The EFF is fighting them, but the way the law is, they can sue and get cash settlements, and it is all legal.
 
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