Friday, October 13, 2006

XM Files Routine STA to Operate Repeater Network with Modifications

After the bell on Friday, October 13, 2006, XM applied for a 180 Special Temporary Authority to operate its network of repeaters. Both XM and Sirius have to do this every 180 days, nothing unusual. However, in this request, XM proposes to make modifications to the network. There are changes in addition to the ones in its emergency request.

XM also indicates that it plans to construct an additional 112 repeaters--previously authorized-over the next one to two years. Parameters will be slightly modified from the original request. These 112 sites (137 antennae) include: 1 in Atlanta; 24 in Boston; 2 in Buffalo; 2 in Cincinnati; 1 in Columbus; 2 in Dayton; 2 in Detroit; 7 in Hartford; 5 in Houston; 5 in Los Angeles; 3 in Milwaukee; 5 in Minneapolis; 2 in Nashville; 15 in New York City; 8 in Phildephia; 6 in Providence; 3 in Springfield; 2 in Syracuse; and 18 in Washington, DC. These are all previously authorized repeaters that were never built that XM plans to construct in 2007-2008. There were 21 other antennas planned for these sites that will not be built. It appears that XM intends to blanket their home terf as well as that of Sirius' with repeaters. Boston will also be well covered.

XM defends its deployment of repeaters and makes its case that the present and proposed configuration is less problematic to other licensees. It makes the point that it was authorized to build 1,200 but has only built around 800. XM points out that it was authorized to build 100 high power repeaters, but has only built a few. In short, the present request represents a smaller, less powerful network of repeaters. Although some repeaters were operated without authority, no repeaters were ever operated in a market were repeaters were not authorized.

In essense, XM requests authority to operate its network of repeaters as built and operated before the repeaters were turned off or the power turned down a couple of weeks ago. Due to lease expirations and destruction of certain towers, etc, XM seeks to modify the parameters on some existing repeaters and to modify the parameters of repeaters yet to be built.

If granted, XM proposes to return 230 sites covered by the present authority, including 24 high power, 162 medium power, and 44 low power sites.

STA Request

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