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FCC to Launch Cable-Competition Report

Cable competition is scheduled to take center stage next Wednesday at the
first Federal Communications Commission meeting for new members Kathleen
Abernathy and Michael Copps.

In a statement Wednesday, the FCC said it planned to launch an inquiry
'seeking information and comment' for its eighth annual report to Congress on
the status of competition to cable.

In recent years, the agency has found cable's share of the pay TV market to
be slipping as a result of the fast-growing direct-broadcast satellite
industry.

According to cable-industry figures, incumbent cable operators serve 77.4
percent of the nation's 88.2 million pay TV subscribers and DBS carriers serve
17.6 percent. The remaining 5 percent are divided among phone companies,
broadband overbuilders and fixed-wireless providers.