The number of FM translators and boosters increased again, fourth quarter 2019 station totals from the FCC show.
However, it is the number of FM commercial and noncomm stations currently licensed for broadcast in the U.S. that is worthy of attention.
At the same, the number of UHF commercial TV stations — the majority of broadcast facilities in the U.S., despite the presence of a “UHF discount” for station owners — slightly dipped due to the post-spectrum auction repack process.
According to the official Broadcast Station Totals as of Dec. 31, 2019, some 8,182 boosters and translators are licensed with the Commission.
Meanwhile, the number of commercial UHF stations dipped, as the ongoing post-spectrum auction repack process is yielding additional channel-sharing agreements. In Q3, the number of commercial UHF stations bounced back from a Q2 decline.
Below is a full look at the current totals:
BROADCAST STATION TOTALS AS OF DECEMBER 31, 2019
TOTAL BROADCAST STATIONS: 33,513
TOTAL BROADCAST STATIONS at the end of Q3 2019: 33,492
TOTAL BROADCAST STATIONS at the end of Q2 2019: 33,508
TOTAL BROADCAST STATIONS at the end of Q2 2018: 33,133
All comparisons below to the end of Q3 2019
AM STATIONS 4593 (minus 8)
FM COMMERCIAL 6772 (plus 44)
FM EDUCATIONAL 4135 (plus 13)
TOTAL 15,500 (plus 49)
UHF COMMERCIAL TV 1004 (minus 8)
VHF COMMERCIAL TV 370 (plus 2)
UHF EDUCATIONAL TV 270 (plus 9)
VHF EDUCATIONAL TV 118 (minus 1)
TOTAL 1,762 (plus 2)
CLASS A UHF STATIONS 356 (no change)
CLASS A VHF STATIONS 31 (no change)
FM TRANSLATORS & BOOSTERS 8182 (up 5)
(up from 7721 as of June 30, 2018)
UHF TRANSLATORS 2721 (down 9)
VHF TRANSLATORS 900 (down 1)
UHF LOW POWER TV 1447 (down 4)
VHF LOW POWER TV 445 (down 4)
LOW POWER FM 2,169 (down 17)