This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

DirecTV, EchoStar Bundle Up

"What they're realizing is that by bundling services, the cable companies have some pricing flexibility," says one analyst. "If you take a single service provider and then bundle others with it, that decreases churn by 50%."

That analyst estimates that EchoStar and DirecTV would each be on the hook for an initial $1 billion to create the wireless network. That person also sees the companies hooking up with Intel (INTC) to use its WiMax technology.

Trying to create such a network would involve installing or leasing terrestrial base stations across the country in the form of transmitter towers so that DirecTV can offer wireless broadband. An earlier initial request for quotes went out in late 2005, followed by a more formal request for proposals, sources close to the deal said.

Asked how many tower companies had the infrastructure to achieve full nationwide coverage, the analyst said, "not many."

Some of the leading tower companies mentioned by sources as being in the mix include Crown Castle (CCI) and SBA Communications (SBAC) and American Tower (AMT). A deal could add up to billions of dollars over several years, including the cost of transmitters that would be installed on towers and rental costs. Of note, tower rental companies are fixed-cost businesses and adding a huge rental contract on an existing network would boost profits.

"We're talking about thousands of towers and most fall in the range of $5,000 per tower, per month," says a source.

As new content distribution models such as wireless and IPTV emerge, sources speculate this could be a two-pronged strategy -- enabling wireless broadband for DirecTV subscribers and also giving News Corp. an in-house broadband network. That network could be used as the gateway to distribute its content, and also more control of its overall destiny.

2 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 18,053.71 +23.50 0.13%
S&P 500 2,088.77 +6.89 0.33%
NASDAQ 4,806.8590 +33.3870 0.70%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs