Satellite pay TV operator DirecTV launched its most recent satellite, the DirecTV-12 high-definition television broadcasting satellite on 28 December 2009. The satellite will be co-located with two of the network's other satellites, SPACEWAY-1 and DirecTV-10, at 102.8 degrees west, and will provide coverage throughout the USA. The new satellite is expected to begin operations early in the second quarter of 2010. DirecTV-12 carries 131 Ka-band transponders and is designed to operate for 15 years. The launch of Direct-12 completes DirecTV's phased expansion of high-definition television service to U.S. households.
The new satellite will boost DIRECTV's HD capacity by 50 percent, to more than 200 HD channels. The network now has 12 satellites in orbit over America, 5 of which broadcast HD TV signals and Direct-12 is the 11th satellite owned and operated by DirecTV.