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What are spot beam satellites?
Satellites only have so many frequencies available to transmit programming. Normally, this isn't a problem, but when you want to send different programming to a lot of different areas, you'll quickly run out of frequencies.

This is where spot beam technology comes in. This allows a satellite to send certain signals only to a small area of the country. As a result, the same frequency can be used multiple times around the entire nation. Because spot beam transmissions that duplicate frequencies are kept away from each other, the signals don't conflict.

Satellite companies use this technology to send local channels to the various television markets. Since those stations are only needed in their broadcast area and frequencies are limited, spot beam satellites can make it possible to send out hundreds of channels using only a small number of frequencies. Without them, Local Into Local (LIL) service wouldn't be possible and you would have to seek an alternate method to get your local stations.

Some stations are send nationally because people who can't get their local stations using any method can get waivers to receive them. These are usually the New York or Los Angeles market stations.

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