Posts tagged ‘Broadcast’
Brackets have been made. New records have been set. Dreams have been achieved.
Over the past few weeks, Americans have gathered around their televisions to cheer on their favorite college basketball teams. Nothing brings people together like sporting events!
Nielsen reports that the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament averaged 9.07 million viewers during the first two weeks of the tournament – up 11 percent from last year and the highest average in 19 years.
The regional game on Sunday averaged 12.82 million viewers, up 31 percent from last year’s tournament.
The Final Four games will be this Saturday, with Louisville taking on Wichita State and Syracuse going head to head with Michigan. Whether you plan to watch at home, in your favorite sports bar surrounded by friends or on your tablet thanks to the power of mobile TV, broadcast television will bring the winners, losers and can’t-miss-moments of the championship!
The National Association of Broadcasters’ executive vice president of Strategic Planning, Rick Kaplan, is broadcasters’ foremost expert and advocate on the upcoming broadcast spectrum auctions. The Federal Communications Commission is currently planning the auction and has indicated it will take place next year. Kaplan offers five main areas that local television stations – and their viewers – should watch as the FCC takes on the unprecedented task of auctioning broadcast TV spectrum.
Coordination Along the Border. To free up nationwide bands of spectrum for mobile broadband, the FCC must update its agreements with Canada and Mexico that currently hamstring the agency’s ability to relocate broadcast stations operating within 250 miles of the border. If the commission fails to reach some agreement—as the statute requires—the auction will yield less money for the Treasury, strand stations along the border and lead to significant and harmful interference issues for television viewers in border regions.
Repacking Part I. The FCC has offered little details as to how it plans to shuffle the remaining television stations following the auction (known as “repacking”). The Commission is currently creating what will surely be extremely complex new software to run the imminent auction and repacking process, throwing out the program they used during the 2009 transition to digital television. Unfortunately, the new program will not have been tested. Broadcast stations should have the ability to test the software and provide feedback to the FCC to ensure their viewers are not harmed during the repacking process.
Repacking: The Sequel. The Spectrum Act, passed by Congress in 2012, compels the FCC to take “all reasonable efforts” to preserve a stations’ coverage area and protect the existing viewers it serves. Broadcasters should be mindful of how and by whom this is interpreted. The proposed FCC rulemaking included some options that could have a detrimental impact on these coverage areas, broadcast stations and their current viewers. The National Association of Broadcasters offered modifications that would give the FCC some more flexibility, and broadcasters will continue to aggressively advocate that their viewers should not lose access to local stations due to the FCC repacking process.
The TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund. Broadcast stations that don’t participate in the auction are rightly concerned about being compensated if they are forced to move. In the Spectrum Act, Congress sought to make the auction as “voluntary” as possible, giving the FCC a $1.75 billion budget to repack and reimburse broadcasters that are forced to move. The FCC, however, doesn’t seem to consider the fund as a budget, meaning there could be out-of-pocket costs for every broadcaster forced to move – those costs could mean less local programming and community service for stations and their viewers.
The Variable Band Plan. The proposed FCC rulemaking recommends creating different band plans in different markets (based on the amount of spectrum it can recover in each). But this is likely to cause major interference for viewers in adjacent markets between broadcasters and wireless carriers operating on the same channels for the first time.
Broadcasters are watching all these issues closely, and working with the FCC and Congress to ensure that as the Commission auctions the broadcast airwaves, viewers continue to have the local TV on which they rely for news, emergency information and great entertainment.
Time and time again, the importance of local broadcast stations is highlighted during times of crisis. When the weather forecast was calling for a massive snow storm in the Northeast last week, local broadcasters were quick to inform their communities, providing tips on how to prepare as well as notifying viewers of local closures.
Television viewers turned to their local broadcast stations for up-to-the minute information on the storm, and many are still depending on their broadcast stations for information as their towns begin the process of digging out to find out when local business and schools will reopen.
One station in Connecticut helped spread the mayor’s request for local teens to help shovel out schools, leading to 500 people showing up to assist in this effort. Another station has released a time lapse video of the blizzard, demonstrating just how much Hartford, Conn., was affected.
When it matters most, broadcasters are there with the critical news and information you need to stay safe, even when other forms of communication fail. That’s the power of local broadcasting.
The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) upcoming spectrum auctions remain one of the top issues facing local television stations and their viewers.
What does this mean, and how could it impact your access to your free, local broadcast TV?
The government is encouraging TV stations in certain places to put their airwaves up for bid and, in return, share in the expected profit with the government. The bidders will be wireless companies eager for more spectrum. Congress intended this to be a voluntary process, and your local TV stations are under no obligation to participate, but serious questions and concerns remain. Even if stations choose not to participate, they could go off the air for some viewers after the auction.
The major challenge is that following the auction, the FCC may involuntarily move stations to create a larger swath of spectrum for wireless companies. Broadcasters want to be sure that as stations are moved (or “repacked”) viewers continue to have the same access to the local stations that they depend on for emergency information, news and entertainment each day.
Recently, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) – the association in Washington, D.C. representing local TV stations and networks – filed comments with the FCC regarding the upcoming spectrum incentive auction.
Broadcasters emphasized that ensuring viewers have the same access to free over-the-air TV should be of paramount importance during the spectrum auction process. This was important to highlight, because the FCC did not list protecting TV viewers as one of its initial goals for the auction. Broadcasters made clear that the FCC should follow the intent of Congress and those stations that choose not to participate should not be harmed in any way. Additionally, broadcasters want to ensure that their ability to innovate and expand services such as ultra-high definition television and mobile TV that benefit consumers are not jeopardized.
The FCC is currently reviewing all the comments it received on the auction process, and we are hopefully that commissioners will make protecting local TV viewers a priority as it moves forward with the auction process. We’ll continue to keep you updated on this issue. TV stations will continue to work closely with the FCC to ensure that the spectrum auction process follows the intent of Congress and that free, local television remains an indispensable service for the American people.
Continue reading the future of TV blog for all the latest updates on this issue and others that impact free, local broadcast TV.
The biggest game of the year is just three days away! This Sunday, millions of football fans across the country will watch the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers go head to head to vie for a Super Bowl championship.
Last year, more than 40 million Americans watched the New York Giants defeat the New England Patriots to become Super Bowl XLVI champs. This game marked the third consecutive year that the Super Bowl was the most-watched television show in U.S. history – a new record.
Also popular among NFL fans is watching home-team games on local TV. The Television Advertising Bureau (TVB) recently found that of 30 markets where a regular season game aired on both a local TV station and on a cable network, 74 percent of households chose to watch the game on their local station.
“Local TV stations provide the community insights, flavor and fun that fans crave,” says TVB President and CEO Steve Lanzano. “When it comes to NFL football, local broadcast television provides a significant home team advantage.”
Whether you’re a die-hard football fan or just tuning in to catch the funny ads or the half-time show, you know you can depend on your local TV station to bring you all the excitement of the Super Bowl live.
From the political conventions to the presidential and vice presidential debates to Election Day coverage, Americans continue to choose broadcast television over cable when it comes to important moments in history. So, it only makes sense that millions of viewers turned to their local TV stations to watch President Barack Obama sworn in for a second term.
In fact, almost twice as many Americans tuned into broadcast television networks than cable news networks for coverage of the inauguration on Monday. Nielsen ratings show an average of 12.7 million people watched the historic event on broadcast television networks while 6.7 million watched on cable networks.
Whether it was the president taking the oath, Kelly Clarkson singing “America the Beautiful,” or famous faces in a sea of people, local stations brought favorite moments of the inauguration from the National Mall into living rooms across America.
When it matters most, local broadcasters bring the nation together.
It seemed like everywhere you turned at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week, there was a new way to enjoy broadcast television! From having local news and your favorite broadcast network shows right at your fingertips thanks to mobile TV to the stunning, crystal clear picture quality of the new 8K TV, here’s a round-up of all the newest innovations in television seen at CES:
- Coming to a living room near you sometime in the future: the 8K TV! Interested in seeing a live broadcast of the 8K TV signal? Register to attend the 2013 NAB Show, being held April 6-11, 2013 in Las Vegas, where the technology will be demonstrated!
- Samsung is pre-installing the Univision app on their TVs to keep up with the demand for diverse, quality broadcast programming.
- Meanwhile, the popularity of mobile TV continues to grow – Dyle and MyDTV now offer live broadcast television for smartphones in select U.S. markets! This service is the same that you get on your TV at home – no data charges or Internet access necessary because it uses the broadcast airwaves.
The future of TV is here – it’s your favorite local channels when and where you want them. It’s the local news you rely on and the shows you can’t live without at your fingertips. Which innovation are you most looking forward to including in your TV viewing routine?
Mobile TV is one of the fastest-growing broadcast innovations that TV fans can’t get enough of!
To keep up with the growing interest in broadcast programming on-the-go, the Mobile500 Alliance, with Fisher Communications and Hubbard Broadcasting, have launched a new mobile digital television service, myDTV. They recently announced that they will be distributing 750 receivers in Seattle and Minneapolis to iPhone and iPad users so that they can try free, local TV on the go via the free MyDTV app.
The MyDTV app provides users with a unique viewing experience, with closed captioning, an electronic program guide, built-in social media tools and an option to record live programs.
Even better, since the MyDTV app relies on broadcast signals (not streaming) you don’t have to worry about using your data plan or getting hit with overages! You can enjoy your local news and favorite broadcast programs for free.
With more options to get your broadcast TV shows live and on the go, 2013 is off to a great start!
It has been over a month since Hurricane Sandy hit the Eastern seaboard but rebuilding efforts continue, and local broadcasters are doing everything they can to help their local communities and those devastated by the storm.
As Sandy approached, local TV and radio stations provided critical information about the storm path to inform citizens. When the hurricane bore down on the area, other forms of communication failed, but broadcasters were there to provide a lifeline to residents. Now, it is time to rebuild, and once again local stations are pitching in to return normalcy to the area. From fundraisers to food drives, stations are asking their listeners and viewers to donate nonperishable items, clothing and batteries to help their neighbors in need.
To read about their efforts, click here.
The holiday season is officially upon us! Before you pack up the kids to go over the mountain and through the woods to grandma’s house, make sure you can make the car ride even more enjoyable for everyone by having free TV on your iPhone or iPad!
The Elgato mobile TV dongle plugs into your iPhone or iPad turning it into a portable television, without the worry of data charges since it relies on signals directly from your local TV stations.
This first of its kind device in the U.S. market can connect to Apple devices and is available in all markets where TV stations are transmitting mobile TV signals.
Mobile TV allows you to stay informed and entertained on the go with the same local and national broadcast news and entertainment programming that you receive on your TV at home. This is live TV, not streaming. And because it uses the broadcast TV airwaves, not the Internet, an unlimited number of viewers can watch on their iPhones and iPads at the same time without buffering.
Dongles have been extremely popular since their debut in early November. In fact, dongles are so popular they are flying off the shelves, making it challenging for the manufacturers and retailers to keep up with demand.
Whether waiting to board a plane or driving to see loved ones over the holidays, users are able to watch their favorite broadcast TV programs live and on the go – for free – with the Elgato mobile TV receiver. With all the expenses that are rung up during the holidays, this is something all consumers can cheer about!