Interference to broadcasters satellite signals on the rise
September 4th, 2008

Reports of critical interference with television broadcasts by broadband wireless systems in the satellite C-band frequency are on the rise, the Cable & Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA) has said. This is already a big problem and will grow much larger unless industry and consumers can make their voices heard, CASBAAs CEO, Simon Twiston Davies, said.

The association said the most recent example was Bahrain, where hundreds of consumers - largely expatriates watching Indian-originated satellite TV via large C-band receiver dishes - had found their service cut off as wireless operators powered up newly-licensed Wimax systems. Bahrain had ignored repeated warnings from broadcasters and satellite service suppliers that unrestricted Wimax systems operating in C-band would result in millions of disaffected consumers, CASBAA said.

For more than two years the global satellite industry has urged regulators to license alternative frequencies to C-band for Wimax, particularly recommending the lower-frequency S-band. CASBAA said interference reports were rising sharply in such countries as Pakistan, Australia, the Philippines, Indonesia and Fiji as telecom operators fired up Wimax systems.

Action needs to be taken now, when licensing is still at an early stage and the situation can be saved, Mr Twiston Davies said. By the time the consumers lose their TV signals, its too late.

(Source: Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)