CHANTILLY, Va.� Sales of FM translators have spiked lately in the United States, driven by opportunities created in the current FCC application window.
BIA/Kelsey reports on its website that it recorded 11 more FM translator sales during the week of Aug. 5�12�. It reported, �This brings the total to date [to] 88 sales of nearly $4 million in value��since July 29.
The company wrote, �We expect that the sales activity will continue to be strong as there is a tremendous opportunity for AM stations to improve their service (especially at night) utilizing these FM translators. In fact, according to BIA/Kelsey�s Media Access Pro, as of Aug. 15, there are 1,727 AM stations utilizing 1,961 FM translators.�
The current window is part of the FCC AM revitalization initiative. Four translator windows in total are scheduled.
The first, which ran from January to July, allowed Class C and D AM stations � the �lower-powered and/or service-limited� occupants of the band � to acquire and relocate one non-reserved-band FM translator by up to 250 miles, and specify any non-reserved band FM channel, through a minor mod application. The current second window widens that opportunity to other AMs and runs through October. The third and fourth windows, to be held in 2017, will give AMs that don�t apply in the first two windows a chance to seek new FM translators at auction, again with Classes C and D going first.
A version of this article was originally posted on the website of Radio magazine sister publication Radio World.