More Stations Want To Go All-Digital


The FCC has received requests from three more TV stations to give up their analog channels and go to all-digital broadcasting.

Two have apparently struck deals with Qualcomm to give up channel 54 or 55 in their respective markets. Qualcomm has bought the rights to channel 55  and is paying stations to vacate their channels on or adjacent to that channel early--before the February 2009 switch to all-digital--so it can extend the reach of its MediaFLO national, wireless video/broadband service.

The two stations are Paxson's WYPX(TV) Albany, N.Y., which wants to give up ch. 55 and broadcast only on its digital channel (50); Trinity Broadcasting's WTBY-TV Poughkeepsie (analog ch. 54, DTV ch. 27).

A third station asking to go all-digital is Paxson's KPXO-TV Kaneohe, Hawaii, on analog ch. 66. The FCC has said it will consider allowing broadcasters on chs. 60-69 to vacate early. Some of those channels will be used for public safety after the analog spectrum in the upper bands is reclaimed after the switch to digital.