|Nashua, New Hampshire/|
|City||Nashua, New Hampshire|
|Branding||NBC 10 Boston (general)|
NBC 10 Boston News (newscasts)
|Channels||Digital: 32 (UHF)|
(shared with WGBX-TV)
Virtual: 15 (PSIP)
|Translators||WNEU-DT 15.3/.4 (29 UHF) Merrimack, NH|
|Affiliations||15.1: NBC (O&O)|
15.2: Cozi TV
(NBC Telemundo License LLC)
|First air date||1988|
|Call letters' meaning||Boston Television Station|
|Sister station(s)||broadcast: WNEU|
cable: NECN, NBC Sports Boston
|Former channel number(s)|
|Transmitter power||922 kW|
|Height||388.3 m (1,274 ft)|
|Public license information||Profile|
WBTS-CD, virtual channel 15 (UHF digital channel 32), is a Class A NBC owned-and-operated television station serving Boston, Massachusetts, United States that is licensed to Nashua, New Hampshire. Owned by the NBC Owned Television Stations subsidiary of NBCUniversal (itself a subsidiary of Comcast), it is sister to Merrimack, New Hampshire-licensed Telemundo owned-and-operated station WNEU (channel 60). The two stations share studios with co-owned regional cable news channel New England Cable News (NECN) on Wells Avenue in Newton.
Under a channel sharing arrangement, WBTS-CD shares transmitter facilities with Boston-licensed PBS member station WGBX-TV (channel 44) on Cedar Street in Needham, on a tower also used by several other TV and radio stations. Despite WBTS-CD legally holding a low-power Class A license, it transmits using WGBX-TV's full-power spectrum. This ensures complete reception across the Boston television market.
In addition to its own digital signal, WBTS-CD1/CD2 is simulcast on WNEU's third and fourth digital subchannels (UHF channel 29 or virtual channel 15.3/.4 via PSIP) from the same Cedar Street transmitter facility.
The station signed on in 1988 as W13BG on channel 13 in Nashua. It changed its call letters to WYCN-LP on April 8, 1996. Originally owned by Center Broadcasting Corporation of New Hampshire, the station aired local community programming for the Nashua era, with FamilyNet airing for most of the day. Its analog-era tower was located on the Rivier University campus between two above-ground reservoirs and Brassard Hall, with studios located in Memorial Hall on the same campus.
WYCN-LP was nearly dropped by Harron Cable on its Nashua-area systems in October 1999 to accommodate a must-carry request by WMFP (channel 62), a move that could have led to the closure of channel 13 even though its carriage on MediaOne in Nashua itself was not affected. Its carriage was ultimately continued by Adelphia Communications following its purchase of Harron, though the station was dropped for a time in 2000 after an additional must-carry request, from WYDN (channel 48), while Adelphia rebuilt the systems.
WYCN-LP, along with three co-owned translators in Nashua, Manchester, and Concord, was sold by Center Broadcasting Corporation of New Hampshire to New Hampshire 1 Network, a company controlled by William H. Binnie, in 2010. The deal was completed January 3, 2012; in the meantime, Binnie would also acquire WBIN-TV (channel 50, now WWJE-DT) in Derry. As a result of the sale, much of WYCN's community programming, including aldermatic debates, was discontinued. In December 2012, the station's studios moved from Rivier University to a location shared with sister station WFNQ (106.3 FM).
New Hampshire 1 Network filed to sell WYCN-LP to OTA Broadcasting, a company controlled by Michael Dell's MSD Capital, on January 14, 2013; the three translators were not included in the deal, and began to simulcast WBIN-TV. Operation of WYCN continued to be handled by New Hampshire 1. At the time of the sale, WYCN was affiliated with My Family TV. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved the sale on March 22, and it was completed on May 20.
WYCN-LP resumed producing local programming soon after the sale to OTA Broadcasting; however, in June 2013, Comcast (successor to both Harron/Adelphia and MediaOne) informed the station that it would be dropped from its lineup as of August 15 due to the earlier cessation of local programming, as well as its limited broadcast reach and continued analog broadcasting (even though WYCN had a construction permit to convert to digital operations and increase its broadcast range). Comcast subsequently pushed back the date of the removal to September 3, despite protests from viewers, politicians, and Nashua's public access station. Due to its low power, WYCN's analog signal reached only portions of Nashua, its city of license. In contrast, its digital signal was expected to reach Manchester and Boston. The digital facility was planned to sign on by December 2013, but was not licensed by the FCC until October 23, 2014. Its digital transmitter was located 625 feet (0.191 km) off Trigate Road in rural Hudson, southeast of Nashua.
Spectrum reallocation, sale to NBC
WYCN-CD sold its frequency rights as part of the FCC's spectrum auction for $80.4 million; in the auction, the station indicated that it would continue operations through a post-auction channel sharing agreement. On October 18, 2017, OTA Broadcasting entered into a channel sharing agreement with WGBX-TV (channel 44); under the terms of the agreement, channel sharing operations could not begin until the WYCN-CD license was acquired by NBCUniversal. NBC agreed to purchase WYCN-CD the same day. In December 2017, the station announced on its website that it would "cease broadcasting on its current frequency on January 16, 2018 and begin broadcasting NBC Boston on a new frequency." As WYCN's signal overlaps with WGME-TV in Portland, Maine, which also uses virtual channel 13, WYCN began using virtual channel 15 following the commencement of channel sharing, as WGME's post-auction physical channel will be 15 (WGME's pre-auction channel, 38, is not available to WYCN as virtual channel 38 is assigned to CBS-owned MyNetworkTV affiliate WSBK-TV). The sale to NBC was completed on January 18, 2018; the station began channel sharing with WGBX the same day. At the time of transition, it was affiliated with Heroes & Icons, duplicating the same affiliation held by WSBK-DT2 in the market; that station continues to carry H&I, though the network lost the low channel number cable carriage it held with WYCN-CD.
In October 2019, WYCN-LD moved its transmitter to Norton, Massachusetts, changed its city of license to Providence, Rhode Island, and switched its affiliation from NBC to Telemundo for that market, leaving WBTS-CD as the sole NBC station for the Boston area.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|15.1||1080i||16:9||WBTS-CD||Main WBTS-CD programming / NBC|
WBTS-CD (as WYCN-CD) shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 13, on October 23, 2014. The station's pre-auction digital signal broadcast on UHF channel 36. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers displayed the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 13 prior to January 2018.
WBTS-CD broadcasts 43 hours, 55 minutes of locally produced newscasts each week (with 7 hours, 5 minutes each weekday, 3½ hours on Saturdays and five hours on Sundays); in addition, the station produces the half-hour lifestyle program The Hub Today, which airs weekday afternoons, and the weekly half-hour public affairs program This is New England, which airs Sunday mornings. It also utilizes a news helicopter (SkyRanger), a storm-chaser satellite truck (Weather Warrior), mobile weather radar vehicles (StormRanger), a consumer affairs unit (NBC 10 Boston Responds) and an investigative reporting unit (The Investigators).
Notable current on-air staff
Canadian and out-of-market coverage
WBTS-CD is one of several Boston television stations uplinked to provide U.S. network programming to television providers in Canada, particularly in Atlantic Canada. On November 11, 2016, Canadian telecommunications company Bell Canada, which distributes Boston's broadcast network affiliates on its satellite, IPTV, and cable TV services in much of eastern Canada and via satellite uplink to other providers, filed a request with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to add WBTS' main feed to the CRTC's list of foreign television channels authorized for distribution in Canada, which was additionally supported by Rogers Cable for their systems in Atlantic Canada. The request was approved by the CRTC on December 20, 2016; television providers who carried WHDH, including Bell, Eastlink, and Rogers among others, replaced the station with WBTS.
- Media in Boston
- Channel 15 virtual TV stations in the United States
- Channel 10 branded TV stations in the United States
- Channel 32 digital TV stations in the United States
- Channel 32 low-power TV stations in the United States
- WBMA-LD, which uses a similar setup in the Birmingham market to provide a full-market ABC affiliate to viewers
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- WBTS-CD Call Sign History
- WYCN-LD Call Sign History
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