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Broadcasters Ask The FCC to Update OTA TV Rules to Allow For Better TV Coverage

For several years now broadcasters have been working on the next generation of broadcast TV. This new ATSC 3.0 standard also known as Next Gen TV will offer a ton of new features to free over the air TV including 4K.

Now the National Association of Broadcasters and America’s Public Television Stations is asking the FCC to update rules for broadcast TV that were first created for the ATSC 1.0 standard. The APTV wants the decade-old rules updated to allow them to use new systems that will help them improve reliability and reception quality on the fringe of their current coverage and to fill in dead spots where OTA TV is weak or not available. This would hopefully mean millions of American’s who don’t have OTA TV now may soon get it under the new rules according to a report from TVTechnology.

“The limitations of the ATSC 1.0 transmission standard made it largely impractical due to design difficulty and costs,” the organizations said in their petition. “The transmission system employed by ATSC 3.0, however, solves this challenge by permitting a simplified signal frequency network design that can finally make these operations cost-effective.”

“This change would significantly enhance the utility of single frequency networks without undermining localism,” NAB and APTV said. “Stations could enhance service to viewers by improving coverage throughout their service areas and offering improved mobile coverage without the risk of encroaching on the service of stations in adjacent markets. In addition, the rule change would promote the efficient use of spectrum by, in some cases, obviating the need for separate channels for television translators used to fill in service gaps.”

The FCC has not announced when or if they will take up this rule change. The FCC has made it clear that the Next Gen OTA TV is very important to them. This change would help with the roll out and also hopefully help millions of Americans get access to free OTA TV.

Cord Cutters News will watch this request closely and post updates as we learn more.

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