Voluntary TV ATSC 3.0 Order Adopted

Posted on November 30th, 2017 by

At its November meeting, the FCC adopted an order in a several-months-old proposed rulemaking authorizing TV stations to voluntarily begin using the “Next Generation” or ATSC 3.0 technology in their licensed television operations.

The order includes many details about how a station would transition to ATSC 3.0, and the associated requirement to continue broadcasting an ATSC 1.0 signal in the station’s DMA. A station’s ATSC 3.0 and 1.0 signals must be simulcast, and the FCC intends to temporarily license “simulcast” channels as part of a modification to a station’s single broadcast license (i.e., a station will hold one license, with authorization to transmit in 3.0 at one site, and 1.0 at another). The simulcast requirement will sunset in five years unless the FCC extends it. Stations’ ATSC 1.0 signals will be entitled to mandatory cable and satellite carriage.