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NAB: C-Band Cost Catalog Underestimating Transition Costs

(Image credit: NAB) WASHINGTON—The NAB has provided its two cents in the proposed cost catalog for the C-band transition that was previously released by the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, with its primary objection being that the current version of the catalog underestimates the actual cost for those making the transition. In comments filed regarding the bureau’s public notice, the NAB said that it finds a number of the estimated costs accurately reflect the work that will be needed, however, other areas underestimate the potential cost. The NAB also said that the catalog should be consistent with the description of technology upgrades provided in the FCC’s original Report and Order, and that any finalization should be delayed until after COVID-19 impacts can be determined. When judging whether or not the costs given were accurate, the NAB said it relied on its TV and radio members, and the circumstances for which the costs were deemed insufficient were not based on “worst case” scenarios. NAB found that the largest potential cost error was related to costs for integrated receiver/decoders. The organization argued that the estimated cost of $5,000-$35,000 per transponder would be appropriate for an individual IRD, but many broadcast stations and cable operators may require thousands of IRDs for each transponder.

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