WBU Calls for Preservation of TV Spectrum Worldwide

TORONTO, ONTARIO, CANADA—The World Broadcasting Union is calling on governing bodies around the world to preserve the UHF spectrum for television transmissions.

“The use of radio-frequency spectrum by broadcasters remains an important vehicle for the efficient and scalable delivery of high-quality media content and emergency alerting services to both fixed and mobile audiences, specifically relying on the following services and systems,” the group’s Technical Committee said in a statement issued this week. “The WBU does not support any change to the current spectrum allocations at UHF frequencies—470 to 694/698 MHz.”

In the United States, 470-698 MHz, or Chs. 14-51, are now dedicated to TV transmissions, but not for long. The Federal Communications Commission wants to reclaim the top 20 MHz for wireless broadband.

The WBU said that frequencies contiguous to the UHF TV band should be assigned to broadcast for advanced distribution and display technologies. The WBU further said it did not support any changes to the current C-band frequency allocations.

“The use of downlink spectrum allocated at C-Band—3.7 to 4.2 GHz—or extended C-Band in the Fixed-Satellite Service, is essential to broadcasters’ operations around the world,” WBU said. “Systems employing this FSS band have been extensively deployed over decades, primarily for the distribution of content from network centers to affiliated stations, cable head-ends and to other receiving systems.”

In closing, the WBU said its positions for preserving the UHF and C-Band are backed up by studies showing interference to broadcast operations from spectrum sharing.

See “Broadcasting Unions unite against TV spectrum release,” by Colin Mann at Advanced Television for more background on the story.