Sistema Público de Radiodifusión del Estado Mexicano
The Sistema Público de Radiodifusión del Estado Mexicano (Mexican State Public Broadcasting System, abbreviated SPR) until 2014, is an independent Mexican government agency. Its mission is to support the development of public broadcasting in the country and expand its coverage. it outcarries this goal through ownership of a nationwide network of transmitters and the management of its own public television channel, Canal Catorce. It also owns four radio stations.
By 2010, two major public television stations existed in Mexico: the National Polytechnic Institute's Once TV and Conaculta's Canal 22. The National Autonomous University in Mexico also operated low-powered test broadcaster XHUNAM-TDT channel 20 and the TV UNAM pay-TV network. However, not all of these stations, especially Canal 22 and TV UNAM, had national coverage outside of pay television services. None of them had a general national reach above 30%. Even then, major cities, including Guadalajara and Monterrey, were not in Canal Once's signal footprint.
As a result, on March 31, 2010, a decree established the Organismo Promotor de Medios Audiovisuales (Promoting Organization for Broadcast Media, OPMA) to build and construct new digital-equipped transmitter facilities, with the goal of increasing national coverage of public television in Mexico. Indeed, when the first four OPMA transmitters were launched on July 12, 2010, national coverage for Canal Once (then known as Once TV México) jumped from 28 to 42%; it is now at 66%.
The 2014 Mexican telecommunications reform transformed OPMA into the SPR, effective August 13, 2014. At the same time, the system became an independent agency no longer under the auspices of the Secretariat of the Interior (SEGOB).
On August 26, 2015, the IFT awarded the SPR concessions for seven new TV stations and two radio stations. In 2016, the SPR received another package of seven TV stations, all on VHF, as well as three radio stations—the SPR has since surrendered all of the TV concessions and two of the three radio stations. A sixth radio station in Colima was approved in 2018.
SPR's flagship television network, Canal Catorce (Channel 14), broadcasts documentaries and other programs. Its programming is designed to strengthen the democratic values of Mexican society.
SPR's transmitter network currently covers 66% of the Mexican population. The flagship station is XHSPR-TDT in Mexico City. Ten transmitters, denoted with asterisks, carry Ingenio TV (14.2) and Canal del Congreso (45.1) in addition to other services. The SPR received packages of concessions to expand its network in 2015 (Tepic, La Paz, Acapulco, Chetumal, Cancún, Torreón, San Luis Potosí) and 2016 (Durango, Pachuca, Puerto Vallarta, Matías Romero, Tehuacán, Culiacán, Guaymas). In 2018, in order to facilitate the repacking of TV services out of the 600 MHz band (channels 38-51), 12 SPR transmitters were assigned new channels. On August 20 of the same year, all operating SPR transmitters had their callsigns changed from XHOPxx to XHSPRxx, the first-ever seven-letter callsigns in Mexico.
Transmitters on the air
|35||XHSPRXA||Xalapa/Las Lajas, Veracruz|
|15||XHSPRMT||Monterrey, Nuevo León|
|31||XHSPROS*||Ciudad Obregón, Sonora|
|18||XHSPRSC*||San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas|
|31||XHSPRTC*||Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas|
Transmitters under construction
These transmitters were part of the 2015 concession package:
|31||XHSPB-TDT||La Paz, Baja California Sur|
|25||XHSPJ-TDT||Chetumal, Quintana Roo|
|29||XHSPQ-TDT||Cancún, Quintana Roo|
|23||XHSPS-TDT||San Luis Potosí, San Luis Potosí|
Other SPR relay transmitters
In October 2015, the SPR signed a contract with Grupo Intermedia, owner of XHILA-TDT and XHIJ-TDT, in order to expand the coverage of Una Voz con Todos into Mexicali and Ciudad Juárez, neither of which had ever had national public television service. While the SPR prefers to build its own transmitters, the length of time needed to obtain a concession, as well as spectrum availability in the border markets, makes a subchannel plan more effective.
|XHILA-TDT 66.2||Mexicali, Baja California|
|XHIJ-TDT 44.3||Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua|
One IPN-operated Canal Once transmitter also carries Canal Catorce:
|XHCIP-TDT 14.1||Cuernavaca, Morelos|
The SPR received its first radio concessions in 2015 and added three transmitters in 2016. A sixth station, in Colima, was awarded in 2018.
Two stations are on the air. Both initially carried Radio México Internacional, a service of the Instituto Mexicano de la Radio, but the Mazatlán station switched in 2019 to a simulcast of IMER's Reactor 105 in Mexico City. The SPR held concessions to build stations at 88.7 in Tehuacán (XHTHP-FM) and 104.7 in Matías Romero, Oaxaca (XHMRO-FM), which were surrendered to the IFT in 2019.
|XHSPRT-FM||101.1 MHz||Tapachula, Chiapas|
|XHSPRM-FM||103.5 MHz||Mazatlán, Sinaloa|
Stations to be built:
|XHTZA-FM||104.3 MHz||Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz|
|XHSPRC-FM||102.9 MHz||Colima, Colima|
The SPR stations carry a multiplex of five or six channels. The established networks Canal Once, Canal 22 and TV UNAM are joined by Canal Catorce, which is broadcast in HD. Third-wave SPR transmitters also have Ingenio TV, an educational channel of the Secretariat of Public Education, and Canal del Congreso, with coverage of Congress.
Prior to January 2019, all transmitters carried Ingenio TV. It was removed from transmitters outside of the third wave in order to meet IFT standards on minimum digital broadcasting bitrate that did not allow stations using MPEG-2 compression to handle one HD and four SD channels on a single multiplex. Third-wave transmitters use MPEG-4 compression, which allows all six services to be broadcast.
|14.2||Ingenio TV (some stations only)|
|45.1||Canal del Congreso (some stations only)|
As XEIPN and XEIMT have their own TDT channels in Mexico City, XHSPR only carries Canal Catorce, Ingenio TV and TV UNAM, using the same virtual channels.
- IFT Comunicado: El Pleno del IFT resolvió otorgar concesiones de uso público al sistema de radiodifusión del Estado mexicano para los servicios de radio y televisión en varias ciudades del país, 26 August 2015
- Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones. Infraestructura de Estaciones de TDT. Last modified 2018-05-16. Retrieved 2017-01-08. Technical information from the IFT Coverage Viewer.
- Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones. Listado de Canales Virtuales. Last modified 25 January 2019. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
- Lucas, Nicolás (2015-10-20). "TV pública llega a frontera de la mano de privados". El Economista. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
- Tweet from @imerhoy