Local Channels for Satellite TV
May 5, 2005 10:08 AM   Subscribe

How do satellite television providers (i.e., Directv and Dish) determine what local market's television channels you qualify for? Is it by billing address? Phone number? Something else?
posted by EatenByAGrue to Technology (6 answers total)
I was told by the DTV phone tech that they use the phone number.
posted by Marky at 10:55 AM on May 5, 2005

DTV allows a "service address", and if you have only one receiver, it does not need to be connected to a phone line. However, keep in mind that some locals are on a "spot beam" transponder, and may not be physically available to certain areas of the country.
posted by trevyn at 11:03 AM on May 5, 2005

Here is a map of the spot beams.
posted by kindall at 12:22 PM on May 5, 2005

Response by poster: Rats. I wanted to get local channels for Chicago in San Francisco. How do they handle RVs or other mobile satellite television receivers? Do they only get local channels when they're near their home base or do they not get local channels at all? Also, does anyone know if the spot beams will change as a result of the new satellites they are launching to support local HD channels?
posted by EatenByAGrue at 3:25 PM on May 5, 2005

I heard it was based on the billing address. The reason why I wanted to know this at the time was so that I could get basket ball games on TV even though I live too close to the stadium and they normally black them out unless you "live" further away.
posted by pwb503 at 4:29 PM on May 5, 2005

It is extremely unlikely that the spot beam configuration will change substantially, as they provide more capacity for DTV, and there is no legitimate reason to remove them. DTV can use all the capacity they can get.

In general, RVs are given the "big four" New York and Los Angeles locals, which are broadcast to the entire country.
posted by trevyn at 7:33 AM on May 6, 2005

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