Communications satellites orbit far above the Earth’s surface and are able to transmit television, radio and even some long-distance telephone signals around the curve of the Earth between distant locations on the Earth’s surface.
The first live Trans-Atlantic satellite program was broadcast in the U.S. and Europe via the communications satellite, Telstar, on July 23, 1962. Two years later, the opening ceremonies of the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games were broadcast live back to the U.S. via satellite. For the first time ever, live programming was being made available to audiences around the globe. This represented a massive leap in innovation and changed the way viewers could see the world around them and it was all because of satellites.
For over five decades, communications satellites have been used to broadcast news, sports, concerts and other programming live as events happened. Today, broadcast communications satellites continue to benefit consumers in the U.S. and around the world as global video channels, broadcast by satellites, are received by both cable and broadcast networks. Other communications satellite services include: