On Wednesday, it was reported that the FCC granted XM the authority to operate a repeater at PGA events for 180 days. A few more details came out today. The FCC accepted XM's application "as is". The excerpt below is cited from the FCC release today:
On February 7, 2007, the Satellite Division granted special temporary authority to XM Radio Inc. (XM) to operate one terrestrial repeater with a power level less than 2 kW EIRP at weekly PGA Tour events occurring at various locations from February to July 2007 as set forth in Exhibit A to its application, pursuant to the technical parameters specified in its application and subject to conditions. The issue concerning EIRP raised by the WCS Coalition will be addressed as part of the rulemaking pending in IB Docket No. 95-91.
No additional conditions were applied. The last sentence drove a stake in the heart of the WCS Coalition's key argument over average versus peak power. The FCC essentially said they would defer any decisions on that matter until final rules regarding repeaters were resolved. The parties have been working at this since 1997. Both XM and Sirius have recently made proposals. The Coalition has not been engaged in proposing rules, only complaining about the proposals presented by the satcasters. Until they become engaged, the rules regarding repeaters won't be resolved.
This takes away this argument from the Coalition for the time being and is a significant victory, particularly for XM.
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