|Irving/Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
|City of license||Irving, Texas|
|Channels||Digital: 48 (UHF)
Virtual: 49 (PSIP)
(UniMas Dallas LLC)
|First air date||April 17, 1984|
|Call letters' meaning||Lone STaR State
K-STaR (station's former branding)
|Sister station(s)||TV: KUVN-DT
Radio: KFZO, KESS-FM, KFLC, KDXX, KLNO
|Former callsigns||KLTJ (1984–1987)
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
49 (UHF, 1984–2009)
|Former affiliations||TBN (1984–1986)
|Transmitter power||225 kW|
|Public license information:||Profile
KSTR-DT, virtual channel 49 (UHF digital channel 48), is a UniMás owned-and-operated television station serving the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex that is licensed to Irving, Texas, United States. The station is owned by Univision Communications, as part of a duopoly with Univision owned-and-operated station KUVN-DT (channel 23). The two stations share studio facilities located on Bryan Street (near I-345/Route 75) in downtown Dallas; KSTR maintains transmitter facilities located south of Belt Line Road in Cedar Hill.
The station first signed on the air on April 17, 1984 as KLTJ-TV (the call letters stood for "Keep Looking To Jesus"); founded by Eldred Thomas (owner of radio station KVTT-FM (91.7, now KKXT)), it originally operated as an affiliate of religious broadcaster, the Trinity Broadcasting Network. Thomas then sold the station to Silver King Broadcasting, the broadcasting arm of the Home Shopping Network and switched its affiliation to that network in September 1986 (TBN programming moved to owned-and-operated station KDTX-TV (channel 58) five months later in February 1987). The following year, on June 1, 1987, the station changed its call letters to KHSX (standing for "Home Shopping in Texas").
In November 1995, Silver King Communications (operated by veteran television executive Barry Diller) announced that it would acquire the Home Shopping Network and Silver King. Two years later in 1997, HSN brought USA Network, and renamed its broadcast television subsidiary as USA Broadcasting. That year, KHSX began carrying a one-hour block of programming from business news channel Bloomberg Information Television at 6:00 a.m. daily and added classic children's programs on Sunday mornings.
As an independent station
On October 15, 1999, the station relegated home shopping programming to late night hours and converted into a general entertainment independent station under the call sign KSTR-TV (the calls were used as part of the station's branding and was phonetically pronounced as "K-Star"); at this point, channel 49 began airing primarily children's programming (syndicated from BKN), reality shows (such as America's Funniest Home Videos and Real TV), sitcoms (such as Sister, Sister, The Three Stooges, The Andy Griffith Show and NewsRadio), drama series (such as Knight Rider and The A-Team), talk shows, and movies; it also aired USA's original programs (such as Tens – rebroadcast from its Miami sister station WAMI-TV – and Strip Poker), along with the regionally syndicated newscast The News of Texas.
During this period, KSTR served as the official station for the Dallas Mavericks NBA franchise. The station also used the "City Vision" ("Your City is Our Studio") bumper cards common with USA-owned stations that had converted to general entertainment independents during this time. The local programming-infused format that was adopted by KSTR-DT and its sister stations in Atlanta and Miami, was originally planned to be expanded to the remainder of USA Broadcasting's stations.
Sale to Univision
Due to financial problems in late 2000, USA eliminated half of KSTR's entertainment programming and re-added HSN programming part-time on weekday mornings from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. That same year, USA Broadcasting placed its stations up for sale; The Walt Disney Company (owner of ABC, the affiliated network of WFAA (channel 8)) was the original frontrunner to purchase the stations, however Univision Communications outbid its competition in a close race; the acquisition created a duopoly with Univision owned-and-operated station KUVN (channel 23). During the September 11 attacks in 2001, KSTR simulcast live coverage of the events from KUVN before resuming what was left of its regular schedule one week later.
During KSTR's last weeks as an English language station, the station aired daily marathons of The Andy Griffith Show and movies until January 14, 2002, when KSTR became an owned-and-operated station of TeleFutura (the forerunner of UniMás). KSTR's meager programming inventory though would move to former Telemundo affiliate KFWD (channel 52, now a MundoFox affiliate), which itself converted into an English language independent station at the same time; all Dallas Mavericks games moved to then-UPN affiliate KTXA (channel 21, now an independent station).
The station's digital channel is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|49.1||1080i||16:9||KSTR-DT||Main KSTR programming / UniMás|
|49.3||Bounce TV (launch date TBD)|
KSTR-TV chose to shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 49, on January 12, 2009, prior to the original date of February 17, 2009 that full-power television stations in the United States were to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 48, using PSIP to display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 49.
As part of the SAFER Act, KSTR-TV kept its analog signal on the air until January 26 to inform viewers of the analog signal's shutdown through a static panel with a message in Spanish, which translated to English, stated "we have stopped broadcasting our analog signal. From January 12, only a digital signal is being broadcast."
- "STARTING OFF ON THE GROUND FLOOR DILLER BUYING HOME SHOPPING NETWORK, SAVOY PICTURES". Daily News. November 28, 1995.
- RabbitEars TV Query for KSTR
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- Dallas Business Journal: "KSTR goes digital Jan. 12", 1/7/2009.
- "UPDATED List of Participants in the Analog Nightlight Program" (PDF). Federal Communications Commission. June 12, 2009. Retrieved June 4, 2012.