TECHNOLOGY

Times Staff and Wire Reports

Loral Gets Satellite Order: MCI Communications Corp. and Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. said they have ordered two high-powered satellites from a unit of Loral Corp. to deliver TV and other services directly to homes next year. The companies will pay $400 million for the satellites, including launching and insurance costs, said Susan Mayer, a senior vice president at MCI. MCI Chairman Bert Roberts said the order puts "right on target our plans" to deliver direct-broadcast satellite, or DBS, service to businesses and consumers by the end of 1997. MCI and News Corp., which are sharing the costs of the DBS venture, are developing a range of consumer and business services for TV as well as for computers. The first satellite is expected to be launched at the end of 1997 and the second in early 1998.

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