Technology is fascinating to me. Some of the most difficult issues in paging were resolved years ago, but they continue to surface. I guess that's why old guys like me are still needed from time to time.
Many years ago Motorola come out with a new alphanumeric display pager—the Bravo Alpha™. Like most Motorola pagers, it was a great product—but much to our surprise, it wouldn't work on some paging systems. I was assigned to contact the various paging terminal manufacturers, offer them a free sample pager, and try to convince them to modify the way their terminal encoded POCSAG alphanumeric messages. This was a major issue and came about because of the different ways developers of paging terminals and pagers interpreted the POCSAG specification.
The issue was eventually resolved when NEC and Motorola agreed (in writing) to implement the same solution.
If you would like to read the details, I have prepared a new consulting report here .
MY DAUGHTER THE SPY
My oldest daughter Allison is smart. She was a Cryptologic Linguist in the US Air Force. She got such high scores on the entrance tests that they sent her to the Defense Language Institute to learn Arabic. She was eventually stationed on the island of Crete in the Mediterranean.
Once, when she sent me a photo of herself, I immediately recognized a big radio antenna in the background. It was similar to one we had on the base where I had worked as a Navy radioman 25 years before.
So, when she came home on leave, I was showing her my ham radio station, and I asked her if they listened on upper sideband or lower sideband. She said, "neither one, we listen in-between so we can catch them on either one." Then she said, "oops, I wasn't supposed to say that. I am supposed to say I am a clerk typist." Ha ha, she couldn't fool her old man — I knew what she was doing. Way too many smarts and way too much education to be a clerk typist.
It's OK for a father to be proud of his daughter, right? I tell her she is my favorite daughter. I tell her two sisters the same thing.
So . . . Allison is promoting an unlimited nationwide 4G voice, text and data service for only $49 per month with the month of December free for those who sign up right away. Check out her ad following below.
Speaking of new ads, we have two new ones this week. Check out:
A new issue of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter is posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the web. That way it doesn't fill up your incoming e-mail account.
There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world's major Paging and Wireless Messaging companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology. I regularly get readers' comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Messaging communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.
Editorial Opinion pieces present only the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of any of advertisers or supporters. This newsletter is independent of any trade association.
You can help support the Wireless Messaging News by clicking on the PayPal Donate button above.
Voluntary Reader Support
Newspapers generally cost 75¢ a copy and they hardly ever mention paging. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially? A donation of $25.00 would represent approximately 50¢ a copy for one year. If you are willing and able, please click on the PayPal Donate button above.
CLICK ON THE LOGO ABOVE FOR A FREE NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIPTION
There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology.
If you are reading this, your potential customers are probably reading it as well. Please click here to find out how.
On December 3rd, 1992 in the little town of Newbury, Berkshire, a UK programmer sent his best mate a few lines of greeting using a unique new technique called Short Messaging Service. The programmer, Neil Papworth, was a test engineer for the Sema Group, and sent the message via PC to the phone of Richard Jarvis, a Vodafone employee. The message was "Merry Christmas." Vodafone intended the service as a fun and easy way to communicate internally.
That obviously wasn't the case. It took seven years after that first message for texting to take off, but now nearly 8 trillion messages cross the air every year. Adults 18-25 send 133 messages a week each.
The Guardian [article follows below] has a nice long write-up on the service, but let's take a moment to doff our hats to the lowly messaging system that could. SMS was, at least in Europe, popular for a number of reasons. Before inexpensive service plans, a single ring to a person's phone from yours was used as a sort of signal that you had arrived or that you wanted to chat. This gave way to texts, which were often cheaper than "phone impulses," relegating voice calls to the back burner.
SMS began with pagers which, in turn, got their start in telegraphy and telex. Messages like 911 and 07734 (read it upside down) were ways to send quick notes to friends. This led to "text pagers" and the first BlackBerry, a two-way pager launched in 1999, with its "druplet" keyboard. Text, in many ways, became the preferred mode of communication in business and between friends.
As you reach for your phone to tap out a message, drain a dram of wassail for the little messaging service that could. While my grumpy generation wld argu that txtspeak hz destryd th writun wurd, I suspect the rise of auto-correct and video chats may reduce our dependence on the old ways. But there's still something special about getting the old "I luv u ;x" from a significant other and a bit of the old "80085" from a friend.
Hi, I want to let you know about an amazing offer and service that I'm really excited about. Check this out — unlimited nationwide 4G voice, text and data for only $49. Amazing value, right? It gets even better . . . the first Month is FREE until 12/31. For more information contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to: www.solavei.com/allie7371
Solavei offers great mobile service at a great price — UNLIMITED 4G voice, text and data for only $49, or free. You have the opportunity to earn real money when you share Solavei with others. Watch this video for an introduction to the benefits of Solavei mobile service and membership.
The text message is 20 years old. Photograph: NetPhotos/Alamy
Long ago, back before Twitter, way before Facebook, in a time when people still lifted a receiver to make a call and telephone boxes graced streets where people didn't lock their doors, Neil Papworth, a software programmer from Reading, sent an early festive greeting to a mate.
"Since mobile phones didn't yet have keyboards, I typed the message out on a PC. It read 'Merry Christmas' and I sent it to Richard Jarvis of Vodafone, who was enjoying his office Christmas party at the time," said Papworth.
On 3 December 1992, he had sent the world's first text message.
Text messaging turns 20 tomorrow. More than 8 trillion were sent last year. Around 15 million leave our mobile screens every minute. There is now text poetry, text adverts and text prayers (dad@hvn, 4giv r sins) and an entire generation that's SMS savvy. Last week saw the first major act of the text watchdog, the Information Commissioner's Office, in fining two men £440,000 over spam texts .
Aged 22, Papworth was part of a team developing a Short Messaging Service Centre at Vodafone's site in Newbury, Berkshire. The idea was to use text as an in-company paging service: "We thought SMS was a clever way for a company's staff to send simple messages to one another. I do get a kick out of being called a 'legend', once a year" he said, "even if at the time the achievement was nothing remarkable , I was just doing my job. It's been quite amazing to watch SMS grow from a simple way for secretaries to page their managers to all these innovative applications that rely on text messaging — voting on reality shows, tracking vehicles or packages and telling you when a plane has landed."
It took seven years from Papworth's festive greeting for texting to take off, let alone spawn that whole new style of linguistics from LOL to L8TR and other trunc8ed spellings and acronyms that have become universally understood. UK mobile phone companies believed people wouldn't want to type in a message when they could simply speak. But in 1999 rival networks started to allow customers to swap SMS while also introducing pay-as-you-go — allowing everyone access to communication technology.
SMS took off. According to a survey by mobile communication firm Acision, it is still the most popular way to message despite competition from email and social networking messaging services with 92% of smartphone users still preferring to text.
They found 18-25 year olds send the most texts — on average 133 messages per week — almost double any other age group. Men communicate via text more than women, but send shorter messages indicating they see it as a functional way to correspond, according to Acision's research.
Women are more likely to send long messages and talk about relationship issues via text — although perhaps not as guilty as men of dumping partners by text. Almost three quarters said they would be lost without text.
The act of typing and sending a brief, electronic message between two or more mobile phones or fixed or portable devices over a phone network is now one of the major means of communication in the world. Texting is the second most common use for a phone — the first being checking the time.
In July this year, Ofcom's Communications Market Report found the average Briton sends 50 texts a week, more than double the figure of four years ago. Although we are dwarfed by Filipinos who text an average of 27 messages each day.
Ofcom found that text messaging had overtaken speaking on a mobile phone and face-to-face contact as the most-used method of daily communication between friends and family. More than half (58%) of UK adults use text messages at least once a day.
James Thickett, Ofcom's director of research, said: "Over the past year there have been some major shifts in the way we communicate with each other. By far the most popular means of communication on a day-to-day basis is by text."
He said the volume of landline calls has been falling for some time but now calls on mobiles are also declining. "Texting is seen as a traditional means of communication these days but it is still continuing to grow," he said.
"Our research reveals that in just a few short years, new technology has fundamentally changed the way that we communicate.
"Talking face to face or on the phone are no longer the most common ways for us to interact with each other.
"New forms of communication are emerging which don't require us to talk to each other — especially among younger age groups."
The advent of text-speak had many worried that it would create problems with reading, writing and spelling in schoolchildren.
But this year a team of scientists at Coventry University found that children who are fluent at text messaging have better literacy skills than youngsters who do not use mobile phones. In the first study of its kind, researchers found that rather than damaging their use of English, texting improved phonetic abilities. The 10-year study, funded by the British Academy, examined the effect of using text messages on eight to 12-year-olds. Psychologist Clare Wood, who led the study, is confident text-speak helps, rather than hinders, development of children's reading and writing skills.
She said: "We began studying in this area initially to see if there was any evidence of association between text abbreviation use and literacy skills at all, after such a negative portrayal of the activity was being accepted without empirical evidence anywhere.
"We found that not only was the association strong, but that text use was actually driving the development of phonological awareness and reading skills in children.
"It was different for adults who found it more problematic because we have a more consolidated idea of what the written word should look like, so text-speak throws us as adults, but for children, it's a bit like being raised bilingual. They get that it's about place and genre."
But texting has also brought some new social ills — cyber bullying, its use in stalking or "sexting" (sending sexually explicit messages), car accidents caused by texting of both drivers and pedestrians and of course the shaming practice of drunk texting.
Messaging also allowed criminals to communicate more freely but the police have been catching up with the technology. Now police often use silent messages, or "stealth SMS" which do not show up on the display but allows data to be created that help them locate or track a person.
Such tactics were used by investigators in the hunt for Soham child killer Ian Huntley. In Germany in 2010, nearly half a million "silent SMS" were sent by the federal police, customs, and the secret service.
Texting has even created a sporting event — the Guinness Book of World Records records the fastest text message as written by Sonja Kristiansen of Norway who took 37.28 seconds to thumb: "The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality, they seldom attack a human."
In 2005, the record was held by a 24-year-old Scot, Craig Crosbie, who completed the same message in 48 seconds.
Vodafone's TeleNotes service, as it began back in 1992, the preserve of geeks and a tool for telephone engineers, has in just 20 short years, become the way we talk. From his new home in Canada, where he works as a software architect for Tekelec, Papworth yesterday sent the Observer a message: "IMHO, SMS is still the GR8ST :-)"
Batsman Kevin Pietersen almost ended his England cricketing career when he sent derisory texts about his team-mates to friends in the South African side. They were "meant as banter" said Pietersen.
Lee Streeter of Stafford sent a text message offering cannabis for sale to everyone in his phone's address book. He forgot he had the numbers of two police officers who had helped him after a traffic accident. He was jailed for 18 months.
Chance Bothe, 21, of Texas texted a friend while driving home from college: "I need to quit texting because I could die in a car accident and then how would you feel. . ."
Seconds later, Bothe's pickup veered off a bridge and dropped 35ft down a ravine.
"I'm very lucky that I'm not gone for ever," said Bothe, who now campaigns on the dangers of texting and driving.
The 2008 LA commuter train crash which killed 25 people has been partly blamed on text messaging distracting crew members and an engineer who failed to stop at a signal.
In 2008 Lord Ahmed admitted sending and receiving five text messages on his phone while driving two minutes before being involved in a crash on the M1 in which Martin Gombar, 28, was killed. Gombar's car had been in another crash and he had left it in the outer lane. Apparently trying to return to his vehicle from the hard shoulder to get his mobile phone, he was hit by Ahmed's Jaguar.
Last month an Alaskan woman fell down a cliff while texting as she walked too close to the edge. Maria Pestrikoff, of Anchorage, survived and was rescued.
Easy Solutions provides cost effective computer and wireless solutions at affordable prices. We can help in most any situation with your communications systems. We have many years of experience and a vast network of resources to support the industry, your system and an ever changing completive landscape.
We treat our customers like family. We don't just fix problems...
We recommend and implement better cost effective solutions.
We are not just another vendor — We are a part of your team.
All the advantages of high priced full time employment without the cost.
We are not in the Technical Services business...
We are in the Customer Satisfaction business.
Experts in Paging Infrastructure Glenayre, Motorola, Unipage, etc. Excellent Service Contracts Full Service—Beyond Factory Support Contracts for Glenayre and other Systems starting at $100 Making systems More Reliable and MORE PROFITABLE for over 28 years.
Please see our web site for exciting solutions designed specifically for the Wireless Industry. We also maintain a diagnostic lab and provide important repair and replacement parts services for Motorola and Glenayre equipment. Call or e-mail us for more information.
Why Should You Choose Specialty Answering Service?
Specialty Answering Service is one of the most trusted call center service-providers in the industry. We have combined an amazing business answering service with a passion for technology and customer service to develop an essential solution for any company looking to stay ahead in our “on demand” world. Your customers want information and answers now. Are you ready to help them? We are!
We are able to integrate with any paging or messaging service that our clients already subscribe to.
PSSI is the industry leader in reverse logistics, our services include depot repair, product returns management, RMA and RTV management, product audit, test, refurbishment, re-kitting and value recovery.
PSSI Offers Customers —
Centralized Returns and Repair Services at our 125,000 Sq. Ft. Facility, in a Triple Free Port Zone, 3 Miles North of DFW Airport.
Experience, PSSI repairs 5,000 units a day and has capacity for more.
ISO9001:2008 Certified Operation, with integrated Lean Manufacturing processes and systems for best-in class performance and turn-times.
Authorized Service Center for Level I, II and III Repair by a wide variety of OEMs including LG, Motorola, Samsung, Nokia and others.
State-of-the-art facility for multiple wireless test environments, including infrastructure and board-level test and repair capabilities.
Serialized Tracking through PSSI’s proprietary Work-In-Process (WIP) and shop floor management system PSS.Net. This system allows PSSI to track each product received by employee, work center, lot, model, work order, serial number and location, tracking parts allocated, service, repair and refurbishment actions through each stage of the reverse logistics process. Access to order status and repair reports can be transmitted electronically in formats like FTP, EDI, API, XML or CSV.
Expertise, PSSI’s executive team has 125+ years of industry experience.
Forget about spare change: USA Technologies, Isis bring m-payments to vending machines
December 3, 2012
If the best test cases for NFC payments are small, frequent transactions such as parking and transit, a new deal announced today between USA Technologies Inc. and Isis may be the beginning of something big.
USAT is a provider of cashless payments for self-serve retailing (think vending machines). Isis is the mobile payment joint venture between three of the four largest wireless carriers in the U.S. — Verizon Wireless, AT&T Mobility and T-Mobile USA. The two companies announced today that they will target up to 7,500 vending machines in Isis test cities of Austin and Salt Lake City for Isis Mobile Wallet acceptance, using USAT's NFC-enabled ePort technology and ePort Connect service.
In other words, no more hunting for change to buy a soda; just a tap of the phone on the vending machine and the goods are delivered.
"Our work with Isis is a great example of how we are executing our comprehensive mobile payments strategy, including leveraging USAT's growing footprint of NFC enabled touch points to bring more value to our customers," said Stephen P. Herbert, chairman and CEO of USA Technologies.
The e-Port Connect service is USAT's wireless, end-to-end cashless payment product that is specially tailored to fit the needs of the small ticket, self-service retail industries. According to USAT, half of its ePort Connect-enabled vending machines, which number 174,000, can accept NFC payments. Of those, approximately 7,500 are in the Austin and Salt Lake City areas.
"We also believe that our work with Isis sends a clear message to vending companies in these two cities — and to the broader market we serve — that there is tremendous opportunity in cashless adoption," Herbert said.
USAT said other vending operators can begin accepting the Isis Mobile Wallet as well, simply by installing the company's NFC-enabled technology.
For Isis, the deal provides another testing ground for its mobile wallet. The company recently launched pilot programs for the wallet in Salt Lake City and Austin, with a larger rollout expected next year. With acceptance at vending machines, the company instantly adds a large number of acceptance points for its mobile wallet.
"By working with USAT, we look forward to expanding the growing list of places where consumers can use the Isis Mobile Wallet," said Jim Stapleton, chief sales officer at Isis.
Originally published December 4, 2012 at 5:16 AM Page modified December 4, 2012 at 6:29 AM The Seattle Times
US seeks to drop Internet from UN telecoms talks
American envoys say they are working with other nations on a proposal to drop all discussions on possible Internet regulations from a U.N. telecommunications conference in Dubai.
The Associated Press
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — American envoys say they are working with other nations on a proposal to drop all discussions on possible Internet regulations from a U.N. telecommunications conference in Dubai.
The U.S. is leading calls to reject possible new codes on the Net by the International Telecommunications Union, a 193-nation body making its first major oversight revisions in nearly 25 years. U.S. representatives held meetings Tuesday on the proposal to take all Internet-related discussions off the table.
The U.S. fears any U.N. Internet regulations could complicate commerce and be used by nations such as China and Russia to justify further cyber-crackdowns.
But the head of the U.N. group, Hamadoun Toure, insists the 11-day talks will not limit freedom of expression and will mostly seek ways to broaden Internet services to developing countries.
Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, Vic Jackson, and Ira Wiesenfeld are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects. Click here for a summary of their qualifications and experience. Each one has unique abilities. We would be happy to help you with a project, and maybe save you some time and money.
Terminals & Controllers:
GL3100 RF Director
SkyData 8466 B Receivers
GL3000L Complete w/Spares
Zetron 2200 Terminals
Unipage—Many Unipage Cards & Chassis
Glenayre QT4201 & 6201, 25 & 100W Midband Link TX
Glenayre QT6201 Link Repeater and Link Station in Hot Standby
FCC FIRES OFF LAST WARNING SHOT REGARDING NARROWBANDING
The Federal Communications Commission has released a final reminder of the January 1, 2013 deadline for narrowbanding of private land mobile radio (PLMR) services in the 150-174 MHz and 421-470 MHz band to migrate to narrowband (12.5 kHz or narrower) technology, and has clarified certain procedural questions. We are attaching a copy of the complete FCC's Public Notice dated November 30, 2012, but wish to highlight the FCC's discussion of the consequences of not complying with the narrowbanding requirements:
Licensees operating in wideband mode after January 1, 2013 that have not received a waiver from the Commission extending the deadline will be in violation of these rules. Operation in violation of the Commission's rules may subject licensees to appropriate enforcement action, including admonishments, license revocation, and/or monetary forfeitures of up to $16,000 for each such violation or each day of a continuing violation and up to $112,500 for any single act or failure to act.
Over the last 1-1/2 years we have modified the licenses for almost all of our PLMR clients that require narrowbanding, to add the narrowband equivalent of the wideband emission type on their licenses. For example, licenses that listed analog voice emission 20K0F3E were modified to add the emission designator 11K2F3E. However, licensees that replaced their older analog radios with newer radios operating with digital emission (e.g., 7K60FXE, 7K60FXD) are required to add the new digital emission type to their licenses.
In addition, the FCC's Public Notice indicates that the Land Mobile Communications Council, which includes every Commission-certified frequency coordinator, has informed the Commission that effective February 1, 2013, frequency coordinators will treat incumbent non-compliant 25 kHz systems as 12.5 kHz systems for purposes of identifying frequency assignments for use with land mobile systems, pursuant to Section 90.187 and other applicable Commission rules, absent a pending modification application evidencing narrowbanding compliance or a pending or granted request for waiver of the January 1, 2013 deadline. This is at odds with the position LMCC took in recent correspondence with the FCC, which instead indicates that stations that failed to narrowband would be ignored by the coordinator:
Effective February 1, 2013, non-compliant 25 kHz systems in the 150-470 MHz bands shall not be considered by the Industrial/Business and Public Safety frequency advisory committees for purposes of identifying frequency assignments for use with land mobile systems, pursuant to FCC Rule Section 90.187 and other applicable FCC Part 90 Rules, absent a pending modification application evidencing narrowbanding compliance or a pending or granted waiver request that seeks an extension of the January 1, 2013, narrowbanding deadline (emphasis added).
LMCC plans to seek clarification from the FCC on this point, which could result in a change on how the FCC would treat seasonal licensees. Under the November 30, 2012 Public Notice, seasonal licensees would be required to complete their narrowbanding work prior to the resumption of operations in 2013. If the LMCC position is followed, such licensees would have to have their narrowbanding applications on file with the FCC prior to January 31, 2012. This is more restrictive than what has been proposed by the FCC.
The only other exceptions to the narrowbanding requirement are for operations on certain VHF and UHF frequencies designated for paging only, and for stations that operate with an output power level not exceeding 120 milliwatts.
The FCC's Public Notice includes one other note of procedural clarification. Page 2 states that:
Modification applications to demonstrate compliance with the narrowbanding mandate should be received by the Commission prior to the January 1, 2013 deadline. Narrowbanding-compliant systems may operate after January 1, 2013 if the application is on file with the Commission by that date and modifications require only a reduction in bandwidth of the authorized emission designators. If a licensee files an application to modify the existing emission designator to change it from a wideband designator to a narrowband designator, the licensee must begin operating on the narrowband frequencies no later than the date that the Commission grants the narrowbanding application. If a licensee adds a narrowband emission designator but retains the wideband emission designator, the licensee has until the narrowbanding deadline of January 1, 2013 to begin operating on the narrowband frequencies. [Emphasis added]
The above language appears to indicate that if you file to change emission from wideband to narrowband and file before January 1, 2013, then you can keep operating wideband until the FCC grants your application. But if you add narrowband emission, you have to operate narrowband starting January 1, 2013. This does not make seem to make sense, since an applicant can convert to narrowband operation before action on its application, regardless of whether it applied to change the existing designator to add the narrowband emission designator. We are seeking clarification from the FCC's staff, but absent written clarification, our clients should assume that they should be narrowband compliant by January 1 unless they have pending an application to change their wideband designator to the related narrowband emission.
Please let us know if you have any questions.
From the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP — reproduced with the firm's permission.
The FCC's PUBLIC NOTICE , DA 12-1914, Released: November 30, 2012, is located here .
Network Trailblazer: A Conversation With Martin Cooper, Father of the Mobile Phone
Steve Wildstrom talks to Martin Cooper about the first cell phone and the evolution of the wireless industry.
By Steve Wildstrom
December 04 , 2012
Martin Cooper talks mobile
On April 3, 1973, Martin Cooper made history when he made a phone call standing in front of the New York Hilton on Sixth Avenue to the head of research at Bell Labs at a press conference inside the hotel. That first cell phone call set off a mobile communications revolution and earned Cooper the title of father of the mobile phone.
Through a long career at Motorola, Cooper worked on a number of groundbreaking projects, including the first handheld portable police radios and pager networks. But his most famous contribution remains the 2.2-lb. DynaTAC handset, the ancestor of all of today's iPhones and Androids.
Marty Cooper holds a current Droid phone; the original DynaTAC is at the right.
At 83, Cooper remains involved in the wireless industry and serves as a member of the Federal Communications Commission's Technical Advisory Council.
Steve Wildstrom sat down for a chat with Cooper on October 10, 2012 at his office in Solana Beach, CA. Here is a transcript of that conversation, lightly edited for length and clarity.
Steve Wildstrom: If we go back to 1973 or so, and from that perspective looking to now, what has surprised you the most about the way mobile has developed?
Martin Cooper: The thing that has surprised me most about what has happened with the cell phone, starting in 1973 when we created the first cell phone, until now, is how many additional things have been piled into a cell phone and how essentially useless they are. Now that sounds kind of surprising because I do use a smartphone and I find some of the features interesting. But for the most part, almost everything that they have put onto a smartphone you can do elsewhere in a much more effective way. You can take better pictures with a separate camera. You can send your email and read it more conveniently on a computer. You can text. The only real advantage is the fact that you only have to carry one thing with you.
The real revolution in cell phones happened with the introduction of a phone where you could talk to other people and perhaps text as well. All these other things turn out to be conveniences but not nearly as revolutionary as just connecting people.
SW: The interesting thing is that voice use starting to—I don't know if it is actually declining but in developing markets it certainly has stopped growing.
MC: There are today somewhere between 5 and 6 billion cell phones in use and most of them are not smartphones. In developed countries we're up to maybe 40% penetration, so most people are still talking a lot.
I shouldn't extrapolate my experience to other people, but I find the most useful thing I do on a cell phone is talk. But I agree that the real growth area is in data and I think that is going to continue growing.
A Motorola DynaTAC and a current Samsung Galaxy S3, approximately to scale.
SW: It must be very hard to imagine—I see the DynaTAC (is on the shelf behind you—40 or 45 years ago to see what these things were going to evolve into.
MC: If you think about it, in 1973, when we made the first cell phone call, there were no digital personal computers. There were no digital cameras. The Internet didn't exist in any form at all. In fact, there were no large-scale integrated circuits. None of the things that are in a smartphone today could have even been envisioned in 1973 and I hate to say it but we didn't expect that to happen.
SW: I'm always suspicious of people who say they envisioned everything that happened. . .
MC: We thought about things like talking to other people, obviously, when we were on the move. And of course the extrapolation of that is video conferencing. So the thought of having a video conference, and perhaps even with a wrist radio—remember Dick Tracy was around then—those things were pretty obvious to us. But not having large computers and digital cameras and the Internet is one of the wonders of modern times. We couldn't have envisioned that.
SW: Who came up with the cell concept?
MC: Ah, that was Bell Laboratories. The idea of having a cell system occurred back in 1946 or 1947. A fellow named Reid at Bell Labs wrote a memo and suggested this might be a way of doing mobile communications in the future. The most significant work, the most significant patent for the cell system was by a fellow named Amos Joel at Bell Laboratories. But I also have a patent on a cellular type of system, and mine was focused specifically on portable communications. But the invention of cellular, the cellular concept, was a Bell Labs concept.
SW: Who came up with the handoff?
MC: I suspect it was Amos Joel, but certainly it was Bell Labs. The nature of what cellular telephony is, is just two things. It is reuse, which means lots of cells in the city, so you can use one frequency in one part of a city and the same frequency in another part so you get much better use of the spectrum. And it's handoff, the ability to move from one cell to another, seamlessly, in a conversation. Those concepts were Bell Laboratories'.
SW: You had been working on other forms of mobile communications in the 60s and 70s, two-way radios and those horrible . . . I'm one of the few people who ever used one of those old horrible car phones.
MC: My entire career at Motorola was in mobile telephony, two-way radio. I introduced the first pagers, I introduced the first nationwide car phone, and as you suggest, Steve, it was a pretty bad experience. That car phone had 12 channels, which was a lot at that time.
SW: But that meant 12 phone calls in the coverage area.
MC: You'd have one station in a city and you could conduct in that city 12 phone calls at one time. During the busy hour, the probability of connecting, of getting a dial tone, was about 10%. Of course, the reason was a city with 12 channels could support perhaps 50 people with reasonable service. They put 1,000 people on it. So the service was abominable.
SW: Pagers still exist, but barely. You rarely see one . . . you do occasionally see one.
MC: Pagers, when they were introduced, were revolutionary to a lot of people. They became essential to doctors, as an example. They changed their lives. But today you could do anything a pager does only a lot better with a cell phone. And the cell phones are actually not much bigger than a pager was.
SW: Cellphones generally still don't give as good in-building coverage as pagers did, mainly because pager networks were operating at very low frequencies.
MC: I hope that cellular service is getting better.
SW: It's getting better, although there are still problems with in-building coverage.
MC: It's kind of an anomaly that if you think about it, most of our cellular conversations are in buildings and in offices, because that's where we spend most of our time. But all the stations that provide services, almost all of them are outside. It's kind of backwards. At some point that's going to change. There are things called femtocells and microcells that are actually going to be in the building. So we're going to have a combination of what we call macro cells, the big ones that we have today, and microcells and femtocells inside.
SW: You see that now in very high usage places, some airports are using internal cells to boost coverage.
MC: Some countries are actually doing much better than we are. I was in Singapore some time ago, and they have many buildings in Singapore where all the services are inside. As you looked in the building, you could see repeaters throughout the buildings. In very dense areas, that's a very good way to get cellular service and it makes it very, very reliable.
SW: That sort of takes me to where I wanted to go in the future. One of the big issues that we face today, and I know you are very involved in it through the [FCC] Technical Advisory Council, is where are we going to get enough spectrum, or how are we going to use spectrum efficiently enough, to support all the data we want to use wirelessly. What do you see as the most promising routes?
MC: I can tell you that the way not to create more spectrum is to redistribute it. And that is what the government is proposing to do now, take it away from some people and give it to others. That's not going to do it. There is, perhaps, a total of about 250 MHz of spectrum applied to cellular service today. The requirement in the future, when all of these new services come into being, machine-to-machine, which will involve health care and people and you really start penetrating because the real penetration of smartphones is not all that great today. Perhaps 40% of the population has smartphones, but they don't use them all that much. But when they start using video, when you start transmitting your body functions to computers, we're going to need capacity of perhaps 20 to 40 times what we have today and the predictions are that that's going to happen in as little as five years. So how are you going to fix a problem of 20 to 40 times more spectrum by doubling the amount of spectrum, if you ever could steal it away from other people.
Well, the solution to that is technology. We have been doubling the capacity, the ability to pump information through a given amount of radio spectrum, every 2½ years for the past 40 years. For the last hundred years, we have been doubling the throughput, the number of bits you can put through a limited amount of spectrum every 2½ years for over 100 years, since Marconi did the first trans-Atlantic wireless transmission. That comes out to, like, 10 trillion times improvement in capacity.
SW: So you sound pretty optimistic about the future.
MC: I am. I know that all of these things are going to happen in the future. We are going to revolutionize health care using wireless and other things, but wireless is going to be key. We're going to revolutionize education because right now—look at all the kids who are sitting there looking at their devices, whether they are cell phones or iPads or iPods. Somehow, that is they way people are going to be educated in the future. They're going to be learning when they travel around and they're going to go to school only to interact with teachers to learn how to learn, how to use these tools. So we are going to do a flip, they call it the education flip. That's going to make people smarter, more educated. We're going to revolutionize the whole concept of commerce. The idea of a credit card—if you are carrying a cell phone, why would you need multiple credit cards?
You put all of these things together and add to that the concept of collaboration. The things we are playing with now, they're just toys—Twitter, LinkedIn, all of these social networking things. When they start becoming a fundamental part of our lives we will revolutionize, make more efficient, virtually everything we do. And what's the result of all that? We're finally going to solve the problem of poverty in the world. Redistributing wealth is not going to solve that problem, it's going to make us all poorer. But if we can get more efficient in everything we do, and collaboration is going to do that, and wireless is a fundamental part of collaboration.
When we get those efficiencies in place, we have the opportunity—it's going to take a long time—to eradicate poverty from this planet. It's not going to happen in my lifetime, but all we have to do is understand what the essence of that is and sooner or later it will happen, if we don't eradicate ourselves first.
The contents or opinions in this feature are independent and do not necessarily represent the views of Cisco. They are offered in an effort to encourage continuing conversations on a broad range of innovative technology subjects. We welcome your comments and engagement.
We welcome the re-use, republication, and distribution of "The Network" content. Please credit us with the following information: Used with the permission of http://thenetwork.cisco.com/ .
R.H. (Ron) Mercer Consultant 217 First Street South East Northport, NY 11731
Wireless Network Planners
Selected portions of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, a newsletter from the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP are reproduced in this section with the firm's permission.
Will Chairman Julius Genachowski Leave FCC in 2013?
Although FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has not announced any plans for departure, the Washington Post reports that it is "widely expected" that he will leave the Commission "as soon as the administration can arrange for a successor." His term ends next June.
In a lengthy article last Sunday, the Post quoted at length from both supporters and opponents of various initiatives undertaken or completed by the Genachowski FCC.
It indicated that Chairman Genachowski's favorite achievements include "outlining a plan for auctions of airwaves that could raise billions of dollars for the government, and a landmark effort to expand access to broadband Internet in rural America."
To date, there is only some initial and unsubstantiated speculation as to whom might succeed Mr. Genachowski as Chairman if he does in fact resign or decline reappointment.
Among the early names floated have been current Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) head Larry Strickling, and Blair Levin of National Broadband Plan reknown.
LAW & REGULATION
COURT UPHOLDS FCC's "DATA ROAMING RULE": The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has upheld the FCC's "data roaming rule." In Cellco Partnership v. FCC, the Court said that the FCC has long imposed "roaming" requirements on wireless telephone companies. Roaming occurs when wireless subscribers travel outside the range of their own carrier's network and use another carrier's network infrastructure to make a call. Until the issuance of the rule challenged by Cellco (Verizon) in this case, mobile carriers' obligation to permit roaming extended only to voice-telephone services. Recognizing the growing importance of mobile data in a wireless market in which smartphones—cellphones that can connect to the Internet—are increasingly common, the Commission adopted a rule requiring mobile-data providers to offer roaming agreements to other such providers on "commercially reasonable" terms. Verizon challenged the "data roaming rule" on multiple grounds. Most significantly, the Court said, Verizon argued that the Commission lacks statutory authority to issue the rule and that the rule unlawfully treats mobile-Internet providers as common carriers. The Court disagreed on both counts. It said that Title III of the Communications Act "plainly empowers the Commission to promulgate the data roaming rule. And although the rule bears some marks of common carriage, we defer to the Commission's determination that the rule imposes no common carrier obligations on mobile-Internet providers. In response to Verizon's remaining arguments, we conclude that the rule does not effect an unconstitutional taking and is neither arbitrary nor capricious. We therefore reject Verizon's challenge to the data roaming rule."
FCC SAYS ONE-TIME TEXT MESSAGE TO VERIFY OPT-OUT DOES NOT VIOLATE TCPA: The FCC has issued a Declaratory Ruling confirming that the sending of a one-time text message confirming a consumer's request that no further text messages be sent does not violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) or the Commission's related rules under certain circumstances. The FCC stated that such final text messages will be deemed permissible:
(a) if the sender had previously received the prior express consent of the subject consumer for the receipt of text messages;
(b) if the final text message merely confirms that the consumer has sent an opt-out message revoking his or her consent and does not include any marketing or promotional information; and
(c) if the final message is the only additional message sent to the consumer after receipt of the opt-out request and is sent within minutes after such request (five (5) minutes is the safe harbor time).
The FCC indicated that it will review, on a case-by-case basis, final confirmation text messages
(a) that contain marketing or promotional materials, or encourage consumers to call or contact locations where marketing information will be provided; or
(b) that are sent more than five minutes after the opt-out request is received. The FCC's ruling permits continuation of the practice of sending a final, one-time text to confirm receipt of a consumer's opt-out request that constitutes a widespread practice among businesses, non-profit organizations, and governmental entities.
The FCC said its ruling ensures that wireless consumers will continue to benefit from the TCPA's protection against unwanted texts from automatic telephone dialing systems or "autodialers," while giving them certainty that their opt-out requests are being successfully processed.
FCC ELIMINATES REMAINDER OF INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENTS POLICY: With the sole exception of Cuba, the FCC has eliminated the 80-year-old International Settlements Policy that governs how U.S. carriers may negotiate with foreign carriers for the exchange of international traffic on certain international routes. Since the FCC implemented an alternative system of benchmark settlement rates (setting the maximum settlement rates U.S. carriers may pay foreign carriers) in 1998, the International Settlements Policy has become less and significant. At the time of the recent FCC action, the International Settlement Policy applied to only 38 international routes (including those between the United States and Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Kyrghyzstan, Turkmenistan, North Korea, Burma, Laos, Vietnam, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Kenya, Niger, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Togo, Micronesia, Papua New Guinea and Western Samoa) which carried well less than 2% of total minutes worldwide. To the extent that client international toll resale operations entail substantial calling over these 38 routes (a complete list of which is available from BloostonLaw upon request), they may see lower wholesale rates on some or all of such routes. In addition, the FCC adopted a number potential remedies to protect facilities-based international carriers and their customers from anticompetitive conduct by foreign carriers. These potential remedies include prohibition of increased payments to certain foreign carriers, government-to-government communications, limitations on Section 214 authorizations for facilities-based carriers, prohibitions on termination of traffic of specified anticompetitive foreign carriers, and full stop payment orders. It is unlikely that international toll resellers will be called upon to enforce any of these remedies.
FCC "CALM Act" RULES BECOME EFFECTIVE: The FCC's rules implementing the 2010 Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act (the CALM Act), in which Congress gave the Commission, for the first time, authority to address the problem of excessive commercial loudness, become effective December 13, 2012. The rules require that commercials have the same average volume as the programs they accompany. The rules also establish ways for stations and multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs) to demonstrate their compliance with the rules, including installing equipment that ensures commercial volume matches program volume and providing distributors with certifications stating the commercials that accompany their programming are fully compliant with these rules. These certifications, though not mandatory, will simplify the safe harbor process for all stations and MVPDs.
OUTAGE REPORTING FOR INTERCONNECTED VOIP PROVIDERS BECOMES EFFECTIVE: The FCC's outage reporting requirements for interconnected voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) providers becomes effective December 16, 2012. The rules require both facilities-based and non-facilities-based interconnected VoIP providers to report outages, as defined in Part 4 of the FCC's rules, electronically using the FCC's Network Outage Reporting System (NORS). VoIP providers must initially report outages
i) within 4 hours for outages lasting at least 30 minutes and which affect a 911 facility and
ii) within 24 hours for outages lasting at least 30 minutes and which affect at least 900,000 minutes of VoIP service and result in a complete loss of service or that potentially affect special offices and facilities.
Final outage reports must be filed within 30 days of the outage.
FEBRUARY 1: FCC FORM 502, NUMBER UTILIZATION AND FORECAST REPORT. Any wireless or wireline carrier (including paging companies) that have received number blocks—including 100, 1,000, or 10,000 number blocks—from the North American Numbering Plan Administrator (NANPA), a Pooling Administrator, or from another carrier, must file Form 502 by February 1. Carriers porting numbers for the purpose of transferring an established customer's service to another service provider must also report, but the carrier receiving numbers through porting does not. Resold services should also be treated like ported numbers, meaning the carrier transferring the resold service to another carrier is required to report those numbers but the carrier receiving such numbers should not report them. Reporting carriers are required to include their FCC Registration Number (FRN). Reporting carriers file utilization and forecast reports semiannually on or before February 1 for the preceding six-month reporting period ending December 31, and on or before August 1 for the preceding six-month reporting period ending June 30.
BloostonLaw Telecom Update
Vol. 15, No. 44
December 5, 2012
This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm. For additional information, contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or email@example.com
PRISM IP MESSAGE GATEWAY
THE ULTIMATE IN COMMERCIAL AND PRIVATE RADIO PAGING SYSTEMS
VoIP telephone access — eliminate interconnect expense
Call from anywhere — Prism SIP Gateway allows calls from PSTN and PBX
All the Features for Paging, Voicemail, Text-to-Pager, Wireless and DECT phones
Prism Inet, the new IP interface for TAP, TNPP, SNPP, SMTP — Industry standard message input
Direct Connect to NurseCall, Assisted Living, Aged Care, Remote Monitoring, Access Control Systems
Intelligent Solutions for Paging & Wireless Data
WiPath manufactures a wide range of highly unique and innovative hardware and software solutions in paging and mobile data for:
Emergency Mass Alert & Messaging
Emergency Services Communications
Utilities Job Management
Telemetry and Remote Switching
Fire House Automation
Load Shedding and Electrical Services Control
PDT3000 Paging Data Terminal
FLEX & POCSAG
Built-in POCSAG encoder
Huge capcode capacity
Parallel, 2 serial ports, 4 relays
Message & system monitoring
Paging Controlled Moving Message LED Displays
Variety of sizes
Integrated paging receiver
PDR3000/PSR3000 Paging Data Receivers
Highly programmable, off-air decoders
Message Logging & remote control
Multiple I/O combinations and capabilities
Network monitoring and alarm reporting
Specialized Paging Solutions
Emergency Mass Alerting
Remote telemetry switching & control
Fire station automation
PC interfacing and message management
Paging software and customized solutions
Message interception, filtering, redirection, printing & logging Cross band repeating, paging coverage infill, store and forward
Alarm interfaces, satellite linking, IP transmitters, on-site systems
Mobile Data Terminals & Two Way Wireless Solutions
Fleet tracking, messaging, job processing, and field service management
Automatic vehicle location (AVL), GPS
CDMA, GPRS, ReFLEX, conventional, and trunked radio interfaces
WiPath Communications LLC 4845 Dumbbarton Court Cumming, GA 30040
Over 70% of first responders are volunteers. Without an alert, interoperability means nothing.
Get the Alert.
With the M1501 Acknowledgement Pager and a SPARKGAP wireless data system, you know when your volunteers have been alerted, when they've read the message, and how they're going to respond – all in the first minutes of an event. Only the M1501 delivers what agencies need – reliable, rugged, secure alerting with acknowledgement.
5-Second Message Delivery
Acknowledged Personal Messaging
Acknowledged Group Messaging
16 Group Addresses
Network-Synchronized Time Display
Simple User Interface
Secondary Features Supporting Public Safety and Healthcare
Amazing Product For Sale
For sale — one tube of rare CB antenna grease. This stuff came out in the 60's. It was developed by the Department of Defense for the armed services. It was mainly used in the field on hand-held units, tripling their range. It is a closely guarded secret by technicians & CB operators. When the FCC found out some CB radio supply outlets had purchased a sizable quantity of the RF grease through US Army & Navy surplus auctions, the FCC outlawed the sale of it in the US. What the RF grease does is make your signal slide out your antenna faster and with less friction. Because of this you get less RF friction (hysteresis). The results are:
lower SWR readings
increased power handling
the faster moving RF signal builds up a tremendous RF inertia, resulting a higher dB gain on your signal (like a slingshot effect throwing a faster & larger signal)
typically 3.8 to 4.7 dB gain
4x the power handling capacity
Modulation of SSB benefits a whopping 6 db gain over an untreated isotropic dipole antenna
lasts for about 6 months then, just wipe off any old grease and put some new on
This is probably the best kept secret in CB radio! The guys at the shoot-outs wont tell you about this amazing secret! Triple the RF output of a 200 watt radio to 600 ERP (effective radiated power). This RF grease also causes a very cool side effect if you feed over 100 watts into a treated antenna you will see a cool purplish-pink halo glowing around your antenna on key up at night, pulsating with your modulation! (This was not too cool for the military, this is why they stopped using it!) For now all I have is one 16 oz. tube. $250.00 FIRM!
[My grandmother used to say, “A fool and his money are soon parted.”]
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Jim Neves <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Chris Wright — Obituary
December 4, 2012 10:31:40 PM CST
Chris was instrumental to advanced features and developments to the Glenayre product line.
Without Chris many custom features would not have been enabled.
He Later Became a partner of Ayerwaves, a custom repair center for paging products.
Christopher D. Wright
Christopher Wright, 52, of Quincy, born Aug. 28, 1960, in East St. Louis (Collinsville), son of the late Donald and Eileen Wright, died Monday, Nov. 26, 2012, at the age of 52.
Chris was an engineer by trade, loved to race motorcycles, enjoyed golfing and was an avid billiards player. He had many friends and will be dearly missed by all!
Christopher is survived by siblings, a brother, Michael (Sandee) Wright of Prior Lake, Minn.; and sisters, Suzanne (Leland) Gonzalez of Hillsboro, Mo., and Patricia (Myron) Potthast of Columbia, Ill.
“. . . December seventh, 1941, a date which will live in infamy, the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt
CLICK ON THE LOGO ABOVE FOR A FREE NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIPTION
Newspapers generally cost 75¢ a copy and they hardly ever mention paging. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially? A donation of $25.00 would represent approximately 50¢ a copy for one year. If you are willing and able, please click on the PayPal Donate button to the left.