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Wireless News Aggregation

Friday — April 7, 2017 — Issue No. 751

Welcome Back

Wishing a safe and happy weekend for all readers of The Wireless Messaging News.

The following, copied verbatim from the FCC's website, is about a recent ruling that effects Paging Service Providers.

UNIVERSAL SERVICE CONTRIBUTION METHODOLOGY; REQUEST FOR REVIEW OF A DECISION OF THE UNIVERSAL SERVICE ADMINISTRATOR BY CRITICAL ALERT SYSTEMS, LLC F/K/A/ NEP, LLC. WCB denies a request for review filed by Critical Alert Systems, LLC (CAS), formerly known as NEP, LLC, seeking review of a 2010 USAC contributor audit decision that finds that CAS did not accurately report certain revenues on its 2009 FCC Form 499-A. (Dkt No. 06-122 ). Action by: Acting Chief, Wireline Competition Bureau. Adopted: 04/03/2017 by ORDER. (DA No. 17-313). WCB   DA-17-313A1.docx  DA-17-313A1.pdf  [Source: FCC]

FCC Releases Guidance for E9-1-1 Location Accuracy Benchmarks

Friday, March 31, 2017
Mission Critical Communications

The FCC released a public notice providing guidance to commercial mobile radio service (CMRS) providers on filing their certifications of compliance with E9-1-1 location accuracy benchmarks as required by the commission’s rules.

The initial benchmark requires CMRS providers to provide, as of April 3, dispatchable location or X, Y location (latitude and longitude) within 50 meters for 40 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls. CMRS providers must certify compliance with this benchmark no later than June 2.

In February 2015, the commission released rules to improve indoor location accuracy by requiring CMRS providers to meet wireless 9-1-1 location accuracy metrics at periodic benchmarks. Specifically, the rules provide that nationwide CMRS providers must demonstrate location accuracy by providing dispatchable location, or X, Y location within 50 meters, for the following percentages of wireless 9-1-1 calls within the following timeframes, measured from the effective date of the adoption of the rule:

  • Within two years: 40 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls.
  • Within three years: 50 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls.
  • Within five years: 70 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls.
  • Within six years: 80 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls.

Non-nationwide CMRS providers are subject to the same two- and three-year benchmarks as nationwide CMRS providers. At years five and six, non-nationwide CMRS providers are subject to the following horizontal accuracy requirements:

  • Within the later of five years from the effective date or six months of having an operational voice over Long Term Evolution (VoLTE) platform in their network, 70 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls; and
  • Within the later of six years from the effective date or one year of having an operational VoLTE platform in their network, 80 percent of all wireless 9-1-1 calls including VoLTE calls.

The rules require carriers to establish an indoor location accuracy test bed and to validate indoor location technologies through the test bed process. The commission also requires CMRS providers to periodically collect and report aggregate data on the location technologies used for live 9-1-1 calls in their networks. 10 Nationwide CMRS providers must file quarterly reports aggregating live 9-1-1 call data from six representative cities.

Non-nationwide CMRS providers must report live 9-1-1 call data in one or more of the test cities or the largest county in their footprint, depending on the area served by the provider, but are only required to file their reports every six months.

Wayne County, Illinois

Wireless Messaging News

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  • Technology
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This doesn't mean that nothing is ever published here that mentions a US political party—it just means that the editorial policy of this newsletter is to remain neutral on all political issues. We don't take sides.

About Us

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.

I spend the whole week searching the Internet for news that I think may be of interest to you — so you won’t have to. This newsletter is an aggregator — a service that aggregates news from other news sources. You can help our community by sharing any interesting news that you find.

Editorial Policy

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.



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The Wireless Messaging News
Board of Advisors

Frank McNeill
Founder & CEO
Communications Specialists
Jim Nelson
President & CEO
Prism Systems International
Kevin D. McFarland, MSCIS
Sr. Application Systems Analyst
Medical Center
Paul Lauttamus, President
Lauttamus Communications & Security
R.H. (Ron) Mercer
Wireless Consultant
Barry Kanne
Paging Industry Veteran
Ira Wiesenfeld, P.E.
Consulting Engineer
Allan Angus
Consulting Engineer

The Board of Advisor members are people with whom I have developed a special rapport, and have met personally. They are not obligated to support the newsletter in any way, except with advice, and maybe an occasional letter to the editor.

Back To Paging


Still The Most Reliable Protocol For Wireless Messaging!



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Advertiser Index

Critical Alert
Easy Solutions
Hark Technologies
Ira Wiesenfeld & Associates a/k/a IWA Technical Services
Leavitt Communications
Preferred Wireless
Prism Paging
Product Support Services — (PSSI)
Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC — (Ron Mercer)
RF Demand Solutions
STI Engineering
WaveWare Technologies

STI Engineering

Web Site: E-mail:





WaveWare Technologies

Enhancing Mobile Alert Response
2630 National Dr., Garland, TX 75041

Contact Us for OEM Requests

BluTrac (Bluetooth Tracking and Control)

  • Monitor and Report Bluetooth Beacon Signals via Wi-Fi
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MARS (Mobile Alert Response System)

  • Paging Protocol Monitoring and Wireless Sensor Monitoring (Inovonics and Bluetooth LE)
  • Improves Mobile Response Team Productivity using Smartphone App
  • Low-Latency Alerts using Pagers, Smartphones, Browsers, and Digital Displays
  • Automated E-mail Based Alert Response and System Status Reports
  • Linux Based Embedded System with Ethernet and USB Ports
  • Browser Based Configuration
  • Mobile Resident Call and Wandering Resident Tracking with Bluetooth Beacons
  • SMTP and SIP Inputs and XMPP Output in Development

STG (SIP to TAP Gateway)

  • Monitors Rauland Nurse Call SIP Protocol
  • Outputs TAP protocol to Ethernet and Serial Port Paging Systems
  • Linux Based Embedded System
  • Browser Based Configuration

WaveWare Technologies


A Problem

The Motorola Nucleus II Paging Base Station is a great paging transmitter. The Nucleus I, however, had some problems.

One of the best features of this product was its modular construction. Most of the Nucleus' component parts were in plug-in modules that were field replaceable making maintenance much easier.

One issue was (and still is) that two of the modules had to always be kept together. They are called the “matched pair.”

Motorola used some tricks to keep people in the field from trying to match unmatched pairs, and force them to send SCM and Exciter modules back to the factory for calibrating them with precision laboratory equipment.

The serial numbers have to match in the Nucleus programing software or you can't transmit. Specifically the 4-level alignment ID parameter contained in the SCM has to match the Exciter ID parameter.

Even if someone could modify the programing software to “fudge” these parameters, that would not let them use unmatched modules effectively without recalibrating them to exact factory specifications.

So now that there is no longer a Motorola factory laboratory to send them to, what do we do?

I hope someone can help us resolve this serious problem for users of the Nucleus paging transmitter.

Please let me know if you can help. [ click here ]

Easy Solutions

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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 30 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.

Easy Solutions
3220 San Simeon Way
Plano, Texas 75023

Vaughan Bowden
Telephone: 972-898-1119

Easy Solutions

How Artificial Intelligence is Reshaping Life and Livelihoods

Published on April 2, 2017
Featured in: Big Ideas & Innovation, Economy, Technology
By Tom Vander Ark

On a recent visit to Energy Institute High School in Houston, students were contemplating the impact of robots and artificial intelligence (AI) on their community.

Artificial intelligence, big data, and a set of enabling technologies like robotics are rapidly changing the employment landscape, but this was the first time I've seen this important conversation discussed in high school. AI will be the single most important change driver over the next two decades. Like these Houston Energy pioneers, very high school student should have the opportunity to study artificial intelligence and its influence on their life and work.

AI–the notion that machines could exhibit human intelligence–was conceived in the 1950s but it became a really big deal with the recent explosion of big data powered by cheap computing and storage (Moore’s Law) and lots of devices, sensors, cameras and RFID tags (the Internet of Things).

AI is a growing web of related technologies that, given ubiquitous use, broke through to the popular press in 2016. When Google’s DeepMind beat the world champion Go player in March and self-driving cars showed up in Pittsburgh in September, it became obvious that this new cluster of technologies was moving fast and had broad implications.

In the early 2000s, Bill Gates aimed Microsoft researchers at speech recognition. By the end of the decade, they were making progress with deep stacks of neural networks. In the last few years, the use of deep learning algorithms has produced accurate speech and image recognition–in some cases better than experts. AI routinely beats radiologists at tumor detection.

As illustrated above (image from Michael Copeland on from a blog by tech journalist Michael Copeland, deep learning is a subset of machine learning. If AI is forms of human intelligence exhibited by machines:

  • Machine Learning, a subset of AI, is using algorithms to learn from data and then make a determination or prediction.
  • Neural networks, a subset of machine learning, were inspired by the connections of the human brain. But unlike the brain, neural nets have discrete layers that direct the data flows. They’ve been around since the early days but were computationally intense
  • Deep Learning: While at Google in 2012, Andrew Ng put the “deep” in deep learning by adding layers of neural networks and then running massive amounts of data through the system to train it. (For more, listen to this Frank Chen video)

CEO Sundar Pichai has made AI central to the Google strategy, marking a shift from search to suggestion. In the “AI-first” era, Google products will help people accomplish tasks in increasingly sophisticated, even anticipatory ways.

The Venn diagram above illustrates how deep learning is a subset of AI and how, when combined with big data, can inform enabling technologies in many sectors. For examples, to AI and big data add:

The profound change is that rather than hard coding a solution, you can feed large datasets into a machine learning application and it can learn how to perform a task better and quicker than expert humans. The combination of deep learning and big data has resulted in impressive accomplishments in the past year–in addition to beating the world champion Go player (after analyzing millions of professional games and playing itself millions of times), also playing dozens of Atari video games better than humans and reading and comprehending news articles.

AI Transforming Industries

MIT’s Eric Lander said in a few years every biologist will be computational. It looks like the same will be true for doctors, mechanics, economists, water managers and soldiers–nearly every field is being transformed by the combination of AI, big data and enabling technologies.

CB Insights illustrates the explosion of AI startups transforming every industry in the graphic below:

A September Stanford study identified profound impacts in eight domains where AI is already having or is projected to have the greatest impact: transportation, healthcare, education, low-resource communities, public safety and security, employment and workplace, home/service robots and entertainment.

Life With Smart Machines

Back to those high school students contemplating futures with smart machines. Given the opportunity for a deep dive, they are likely to draw six conclusions:

  1. Automation will change the nature of work for several billion people—enabling (and requiring) them to work with smart machines while increasing skill requirements and extending individual contributions.
  2. Waves of job losses over the next decade will impact hundreds of millions of people, as roles based on repetitive rules application are likely to be phased out.
  3. High skill jobs will be created in Smart Cities that skill up around emerging opportunities like custom manufacturing.
  4. Human judgment becomes more valuable as machine intelligence makes predictions cheap. Empathy and social interaction, creativity and design thinking, and an innovation mindset will be increasingly in demand.
  5. Income inequality is likely to grow with a divide between those who can code and leverage smart tools and those performing non-repetitive service jobs. Narrowing the divide will require a new social contract that may include a guaranteed income.
  6. Ethical issues, such as genomic editing, security and privacy, and biases (taught and learned) will outstrip civic problem-solving capacity.

It’s Time To #AskAboutAI

An October White House report suggested that AI has the potential to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges and inefficiencies, specifically in education, healthcare, energy and the environment. On the other hand, AI is rapidly reshaping the employment landscape and surfacing mind-bending ethical issues like genomic editing. Given the opportunities and challenges, it is a topic every school community should be discussing—we think it’s time to #AskAboutAI.

We have four goals for this thought leadership campaign:

  1. Predict labor market impacts including types of jobs and job competencies by 2030.
  2. Identify emerging ethical and social issues that educators, parents and policymakers should begin addressing.
  3. Advise educators, parents and policymakers on knowledge, skills and dispositions likely to be important in the automation economy.
  4. Illustrate new impact pathways that combine domain expertise with data science (we call it cause + code)

We welcome your questions, comments and contributions to this campaign. The future is ours to shape—but it’s coming at us faster than ever.

Source: Linkedin  

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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.

Deaf community weighs in on need for emergency communications

By Rosie Newberry
Published: April 7, 2017, 11:25 am
Updated: April 7, 2017, 11:34 am

Trevor Boucher with the National Weather Service speaks during a town hall meeting with the deaf community about the importance of broadcasting information during severe weather.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — On Wednesday, the National Weather Service hosted a town hall meeting with the deaf community to address questions, comments and concerns about how severe weather threats are communicated. Representatives from CapCOG, ATX Floods, Austin Travis County Emergency Medical Services, area news stations and other emergency organizations were present to open a dialogue about what deaf and hard-of-hearing people in the Austin-area want to see during severe storms.

Seeing is key. Bobbie Beth Scoggins, who was born deaf, stresses that deaf people need more visual cues because sound alerts are unavailable to people like her. Hearing people tend to take, for instance, weather radios for granted. A relatively affordable $30 NOAA Weather Radio needs a flashing light and LED readout attachment to be useful to deaf and hard-of-hearing people, which can push the price upwards of $100.

“I think what we saw this afternoon is just having to appreciate the frustration, the struggle and just noticing that, okay, there are no plans really to address these things as of yet,” Scoggins said.

Trevor Boucher is a local National Weather Service meteorologist who helped organize the meeting. He believes outreach is critical in this area where the deaf community is the second largest in the country.

“There’s really a two-fold problem,” Boucher said. One, that we’re not really aware of what’s going on in the deaf community as far as what they need, and the deaf community is not really aware of what’s available to them.”

The hope is that Wednesday’s discussion will start facilitating small steps that will eventually turn into big changes, including better closed captioning on television, changing highway alert signs to include weather messages and implementing text-to-911. Learn more about Austin’s text-to-911 rollout here.

“We have a beginning,” Scoggins said about how the meeting played out. “I think hopefully this town hall will be the first of many dialogs and discussions.”

One thing deaf community members can do is to register each year with STEAR, a free state system that flags your residence for special assistance from emergency responders, should severe weather strike.


RF Demand Solutions

Codan Paging Transmitters

  • The smart choice for Critical Messaging
  • Proven performance in extreme conditions
  • Trusted by the World's largest mission critical security, military, & humanitarian agencies

Flexible Modern Design:

  • Analog & Digital
  • VHF, UHF & 900 MHz
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  • Integrates with Motorola & Glenayre Simulcast
  • Compatible with most popular Controllers


Time to Upgrade?

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Your US Distributor for Codan Radio Paging Equipment
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Leavitt Communications


Specialists in sales and service of equipment from these leading manufacturers, as well as other two-way radio and paging products:

UNICATION bendix king

motorola blue Motorola SOLUTIONS

COM motorola red Motorola MOBILITY spacer
Philip C. Leavitt
Leavitt Communications
7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
Web Site:
Mobile phone: 847-494-0000
Telephone: 847-955-0511
Fax: 270-447-1909
Skype ID: pcleavitt


Disaster-Proven Paging for Public Safety

Paging system designs in the United States typically use a voice radio-style infrastructure. These systems are primarily designed for outdoor mobile coverage with modest indoor coverage. Before Narrowbanding, coverage wasn’t good, but what they have now is not acceptable! The high power, high tower approach also makes the system vulnerable. If one base station fails, a large area loses their paging service immediately!

Almost every technology went from analog to digital except fire paging. So it’s time to think about digital paging! The Disaster-Proven Paging Solution (DiCal) from Swissphone offers improved coverage, higher reliability and flexibility beyond anything that traditional analog or digital paging systems can provide. 

Swissphone is the No. 1 supplier for digital paging solutions worldwide. The Swiss company has built paging networks for public safety organizations all over the world. Swissphone has more than 1 million pagers in the field running for years and years due to their renowned high quality.

DiCal is the digital paging system developed and manufactured by Swissphone. It is designed to meet the specific needs of public safety organizations. Fire and EMS rely on these types of networks to improve incident response time. DiCal systems are designed and engineered to provide maximum indoor paging coverage across an entire county. In a disaster situation, when one or several connections in a simulcast solution are disrupted or interrupted, the radio network automatically switches to fall back operating mode. Full functionality is preserved at all times. This new system is the next level of what we know as “Simulcast Paging” here in the U.S.

Swissphone offers high-quality pagers, very robust and waterproof. Swissphone offers the best sensitivity in the industry, and battery autonomy of up to three months. First responder may choose between a smart s.QUAD pager, which is able to connect with a smartphone and the Hurricane DUO pager, the only digital pager who offers text-to-voice functionality.

Bluetooth technology makes it possible to connect the s.QUAD with a compatible smartphone, and ultimately with various s.ONE software solutions from Swissphone. Thanks to Bluetooth pairing, the s.QUAD combines the reliability of an independent paging system with the benefits of commercial cellular network. Dispatched team members can respond back to the call, directly from the pager. The alert message is sent to the pager via paging and cellular at the same time. This hybrid solution makes the alert faster and more secure. Paging ensures alerting even if the commercial network fails or is overloaded.

Swissphone sets new standards in paging:

Paging Network

  • It’s much faster to send individual and stacked pages digitally than with analog voice.
  • If you want better indoor coverage, you put sites closer together at lower heights.
  • A self-healing system that also remains reliable in various disaster situations.
  • Place base station where you need them, without the usage of an expensive backhaul network.
  • Protect victim confidentiality and prevent unauthorized use of public safety communications, with integrated encryption service.


  • Reliable message reception, thanks to the best sensitivity in the industry.
  • Ruggedized and waterproof, IP67 and 6 1/2-feet drop test-certified products.
  • Battery autonomy of up to three months, with a standard AA battery.
  • Bluetooth enables the new s.QUAD pager to respond back to the dispatch center or fire chief.


  • Two-way CAD interfaces will make dispatching much easier.
  • The new s.ONE solution enables the dispatcher or fire chiefs to view the availability of relief forces.
  • A graphical screen shows how many of the dispatched team members have responded to the call.

Swissphone provides a proven solution at an affordable cost. Do you want to learn more?
Visit: or call 800-596-1914.

Leavitt Communications

We can supply alphanumeric display, numeric display, and voice pagers.

We also offer NEW and refurbished Alphamate 250s, refurbished Alphamate IIs, the original Alphamate refurbished, and new and refurbished pagers, pager repairs, pager parts, and accessories. We are FULL SERVICE in Paging! Outstanding service is our goal.

E-mail Phil Leavitt ( ) for pricing and delivery information, or for a list of other available paging and two-way related equipment.

Phil Leavitt

7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

To All Leavitt Customers for Motorola Items:

I want to let you know about a pending supply disruption at Motorola. Motorola historically has 7 different operating systems across the globe. They have been working for over 2 years to retire these diverse and incompatible systems. The plan is to all of these systems and bring all businesses back up under one new consistent system to serve their entire worldwide enterprise. Due to the software transition I have been informed that Motorola ship ANY product during the actual transition period. As of today, the planned last day to ship will be April 7, 2017 and shipments will slowly start to ramp up beginning on Tuesday afternoon April 18th. This will affect ALL Motorola customers and items — radios and parts. It is likely that once shipments resume, Motorola will prioritize strategic and contract customers. Therefore, the stop or delay in shipping for us could last even longer. Lastly, if you have ever been involved with a total operating software swap out you know that there are likely to be issues that extend the delay beyond that predicted.

I will be stocking extra material to cover our normal item shipments. Large orders or items that are not typically ordered may not be deliverable until shipments resume. I will also continue to offer QUALITY aftermarket products like batteries, chargers, mikes and headsets should you need them.

Motorola is suggesting that any orders that absolutely need to be shipped prior to the shutdown be placed prior to March 16th. That date may be a bit aggressive, but it does serve as a warning that late placed orders may not be filled.

I am sure they have tested this program many times but I do think there is big risk that the shutdown may last longer than anticipated and the startup may be slower than we would like.

Feel free to call to discuss any questions you might have regarding the situation.

Again, we hope to be able to serve your Motorola Solution’s accessory, battery and parts needs if your normal supplier cannot.


Phil Leavitt

Specialists in ICOM, Motorola, Bendix-King, Zetron, Unication  
& other two way & paging products  

Philip C. Leavitt

Leavitt Communications  
7508 N. Red Ledge Drive  
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

Skype ID: 


Friday, April 7, 2017 Volume 5 | Issue 69

IWCE 2017 “As Relevant As Ever,” Drew Over 7,000 Attendees

Government, public safety, transportation, utilities and enterprises rely on communications technology to keep the public safe, everything powered, communities moving, employees working and our lives and businesses working properly. Last week at the International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) over 7,000 communications technology professionals gathered in Las Vegas to learn, network and see new, innovative technologies from more than 400 exhibitors; 100 of those were new to the event, according to show executives.

Stephanie McCall, Show Director, IWCE said, “Over the past 40 years IWCE has evolved from a dealer- only show to a communications technology event. The response we received from attendees and exhibitors last week shows that IWCE is as relevant as ever. We continue to be committed to delivering outstanding education and a platform for technologies innovators to showcase their technology. This is a very exciting time for our industry. We are thrilled to play a role providing a forum for critical communications technology professionals.”

The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) partner announcement was the buzz among event attendees. FirstNet was featured throughout the expo hall and conference program. In addition, FirstNet President T.J. Kennedy delivered a keynote address discussing the latest updates to the nationwide public safety broadband network. To view the video, click here. The week’s biggest announcement was made Thursday in Washington, D.C., by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, who announced that FirstNet would sign a 25-year contract to AT&T to build and maintain the nationwide public-safety broadband network, Inside Towers reported. Leaders from FirstNet then held a Town Hall at IWCE on Thursday afternoon to discuss the announcement further. Click here to view the video.

IWCE 2017 was co-located with IWCE’s Network Infrastructure Forum, which brought together the industry’s wired and wireless players to examine communications technology infrastructure, and ETA International’s Education Forum, which offered nine training courses in popular technology areas along with certification. IWCE also celebrated the retirement and 60-year public service career of Chief Harlin McEwen with a Lifetime Achievement Award. McEwen is currently the Chairman of the FirstNet’s Public Safety Advisory Committee and has had a remarkable story of public safety service, as both a law enforcement officer and administrator. He has been an advocate for public safety telecommunications issues and the “unquestionable lobbying leader for public safety to Congress and the FCC,” according to McCall.

IWCE 2018 will take place March 5-9, 2018, in Orlando, Florida. To learn more, visit

April 7, 2017

Source: Inside Towers  

Hark Technologies

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Wireless Communication Solutions

USB Paging Encoder

paging encoder

  • Single channel up to eight zones
  • Connects to Linux computer via USB
  • Programmable timeouts and batch sizes
  • Supports 2-tone, 5/6-tone, POCSAG 512/1200/2400, GOLAY
  • Supports Tone Only, Voice, Numeric, and Alphanumeric
  • PURC or direct connect
  • Pictured version mounts in 5.25" drive bay
  • Other mounting options available
  • Available as a daughter board for our embedded Internet Paging Terminal (IPT)

Paging Data Receiver (PDR)


  • Frequency agile—only one receiver to stock
  • USB or RS-232 interface
  • Two contact closures
  • End-user programmable w/o requiring special hardware
  • 16 capcodes
  • Eight contact closure version also available
  • Product customization available

Other products

Please see our web site for other products including Internet Messaging Gateways, Unified Messaging Servers, test equipment, and Paging Terminals.

Hark Technologies
717 Old Trolley Rd Ste 6 #163
Summerville, SC 29485
Tel: 843-821-6888
Fax: 843-821-6894
E-mail: left arrow CLICK
Web: left arrow CLICK

Hark Technologies

Preferred Wireless

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Terminals & Controllers:
8 ASC1500 Complete, w/Spares
3 CNET Platinum Controllers
2 GL3100 RF Director
1 GL3000 ES — 2 Chassis — Configurable
1 GL3000 L — 2 Cabinets, complete working, w/spares
35 SkyData 8466 B Receivers
10 Zetron M66 Transmitter Controllers
10 C2000s
2 Glenayre Complete GPS Kits
3 Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
Link Transmitters:
7 Glenayre QT4201 25W Midband Link TX
3 Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
1 Motorola Q2630A, 30W, UHF Link TX
  Coming soon, QT-5994 & QT-6994 900MHz Link TX
VHF Paging Transmitters:
7 Motorola Nucleus 125W CNET
3 Motorola Nucleus 350W CNET
7 Motorola Nucleus 350W NAC
14 Motorola Nucleus 125W NAC
1 Glenayre QT7505
1 Glenayre QT8505
3 Glenayre QT-100C
UHF Paging Transmitters:
15 Glenayre UHF GLT5340, 125W, DSP Exciter
900 MHz Paging Transmitters:
2 Glenayre GLT8200, 25W (NEW)
5 Glenayre GLT-8500 250W
4 Glenayre GLT 8600, 500W
23 Motorola Nucleus II 300W CNET
Miscellaneous Parts:
  Nucleus Power Supplies
  Nucleus NAC Boards
  Nucleus NIU, Matched Pairs
  Nucleus GPS Reference Modules
  Nucleus GPS Receivers
  Nucleus Chassis
  Glenayre 8500, PAs, PSs, DSP Exciters
  Glenayre VHF DSP Exciters
  Glenayre GL Terminal Cards
  Zetron 2000 Terminal Cards
  Unipage Terminal Cards


Too Much To List • Call or E-Mail

Rick McMichael
Preferred Wireless, Inc.
Telephone: 888-429-4171
(If you are calling from outside of the USA, please use: 314-575-8425) left arrow

Preferred Wireless

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Formed in 2010, CAS brought together the resources and capabilities of two leading critical messaging solutions providers, UCOM™ and Teletouch™ Paging, along with lntego Systems™, a pioneer in next-generation nurse call systems. The result was an organization that represented more than 40 years of combined experience serving hospitals and healthcare providers.

CAS was created to be a single-source provider for hospitals and healthcare facilities in need of advanced nurse call and communications technologies.

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© Copyright 2015 - Critical Alert Systems, Inc.

BloostonLaw Newsletter

Selected portions [sometimes more—sometimes less] of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update and/or the BloostonLaw Private Users Update — newsletters from the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP — are reproduced in this section of The Wireless Messaging News with the firm’s permission. Contact information is included at the end of the newsletter.

BloostonLaw Telecom Update Vol. 20, No. 15 April 5, 2017

REMINDER: Study Area Boundary Recertification Due Next Month

In addition to the obligation to submit updated information when study area boundaries change, all ILECs are required to recertify their study area boundary data every two years. The recertification is due this year by May 26, 2017. Where the state commission filed the study area boundary data for an ILEC, the state commission should submit the recertification. However, where the ILEC submitted the study area boundary data rather than the state, then the ILEC should submit the recertification by May 26, 2017. The WCB's data collection interface to allow for the recertification of data and instructions can be found at

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy and Mary Sisak.


President Trump Signs Order Overturning Broadband Privacy Order; Status of CPNI Report Up in the Air

On April 4, President Trump signed into law a bill overturning the FCC’s Broadband Privacy Order, bringing to fruition many predictions about the future of the Order under the new administration. The bill itself is straightforward; it states, in whole:

That Congress disapproves the rule submitted by the Federal Communications Commission relating to “Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband and Other Telecommunications Services” (81 Fed. Reg. 87274 (December 2, 2016)), and such rule shall have no force or effect.

While the bill clearly affects the various portions of the Order aimed at broadband providers – data security requirements, customer notices, customer approvals such as opt-out and opt-in, and data breach notifications – it is important to note that one of the FCC’s primary goals in the Order was to harmonize the existing CPNI rules with the new broadband privacy rules so that a common set of rules applies to both. Hence, in many cases, the existing CPNI rules were modified and integrated into a common set of voice and broadband privacy and data security rules.

Presumably, the unmodified rules are back into effect, but it’s unclear whether the FCC will act regarding this year’s CPNI certification, which was eliminated by the Order. Carriers with any questions about what obligations now apply should contact the firm for more information.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy and Sal Taillefer.

FCC Announces Tentative Agenda for April Open Meeting

On March 30, the FCC issued a Press Release announcing the tentative agenda for the agenda for the April Open Commission Meeting scheduled for Thursday, April 20, 2017. Pursuant to the FCC’s Public Draft Pilot Program, the draft text of each item is available to the public.

Connect America Fund — an Order on Reconsideration that would amend the construction project limitation within section 54.303 of the FCC’s rules to permit carriers to report, for universal service purposes, capital expenses per location up to the established per-location per-project limit, rather than disallowing all capital expenses associated with construction projects in excess of the limit. (WC Docket Nos. 10-90 and 14-58; CC Docket No. 01-92)

Wireline Infrastructure Deployment — a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Notice of Inquiry, and Request for Comment that would propose to remove regulatory barriers to infrastructure investment, suggest changes to speed the transition from copper networks and legacy services to next-generation networks and services dependent on fiber, and propose to reform FCC regulations that are raising costs and slowing, rather than facilitating, broadband deployment. (WC Docket No. 17-84)

Wireless Infrastructure Deployment — a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Notice of Inquiry that commences an examination of the regulatory impediments to wireless network infrastructure investment and deployment, and how the FCC may remove or reduce such impediments consistent with the law and the public interest. (WT Docket 17-79; WT Docket 15-180)

Business Data Services — a Report and Order that recognizes the strong competition present in the business data services market and modernizes the FCC’s regulatory structure accordingly to bring ever new and exciting technologies, products, and services to businesses and consumers. (WC Docket Nos. 16-143, 15-247, 05-25; GN Docket No. 13-5; RM-10593)

Reinstating the UHF Discount — an Order on Reconsideration to reinstate the UHF discount used to calculate compliance with the national television audience reach cap. (MB Docket No. 13-236)

Noncommercial Educational Station Third-Party Fundraising — a Report and Order that would adopt rules permitting NCE stations not funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to alter or suspend regular programming in order to conduct fundraising for third-party non-profit organizations so long as such stations do not spend more than one percent of their total annual airtime on such activities. (MB Docket No. 12-106)

Promoting Diversification of Ownership in the Broadcasting Services — an Order on Reconsideration that would allow noncommercial broadcasters greater flexibility to use a Special Use FRN for ownership reporting purposes and avoid the need to submit personal information to the FCC. (MB Docket No. 07-294; MD Docket No. 10-234)

The Open Meeting is scheduled to commence at 10:30 a.m., and will be streamed live at and on social media with #OpenMtgFCC.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy and Sal Taillefer.

D.C. Circuit Vacates FCC Order on Opt-Out Notices for Solicited Faxes

On March 31, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued an opinion holding that the FCC lacked authority under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) to regulate facsimiles that were sent with the recipient’s consent. As a result, the 2006 Order in which the FCC required the sender to include an opt-out notice on the faxes was vacated.

In holding that the FCC had exceeded the authority granted to it under the TCPA, the D.C. Circuit relied upon language of the TCPA itself, which makes it unlawful for a person or entity “to send, to a telephone facsimile machine, an unsolicited advertisement” and defines “unsolicited advertisement” as “any material advertising the commercial availability or quality of any property, goods, or services which is transmitted to any person without that person’s prior express invitation or permission, in writing or otherwise.” The court understood this language to mean that Congress intended to draw a line between solicited and unsolicited advertisements.

Shortly after the release of the D.C. Circuit’s opinion, newly named Chairman to the FCC, Ajit Pai, issued the following statement:

Today’s decision by the D.C. Circuit highlights the importance of the FCC adhering to the rule of law. I dissented from the FCC decision that the court has now overturned because, as I stated at the time, the agency’s approach to interpreting the law reflected “convoluted gymnastics.” The court has now agreed that the FCC acted unlawfully. Going forward, the Commission will strive to follow the law and exercise only the authority that has been granted to us by Congress.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast and Sal Taillefer.

Law & Regulation

FCC Adopts World Radiocommunication Conference Frequency Allocations

On March 29, the FCC released a Report and Order adopting rules to implement certain radio frequency allocation decisions from the World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 2012) (WRC 12) and conform existing rules to the WRC-12 Final Acts. Specifically, the Report and Order contains five major actions to support non-Federal spectrum requirements:

  • Allocate the 472-479 kHz band to the amateur service on a secondary basis and amend Part 97 to provide for amateur service use of this band and of the 135.7-137.8 kHz band.
  • Amend Part 80 to authorize radio buoy operations in the 1900-2000 kHz band under a ship station license.
  • Allocate eight frequency bands in the 4 to 44 MHz range to the radiolocation service for Federal and non-Federal use, limited to oceanographic radars. The FCC also amended Part 90 to provide for licensing of oceanographic radars, and require those radars currently operating under an experimental license to conform their operations to the adopted rules within five years of the effective date of this Order.
  • Reallocate the 156.7625-156.7875 MHz and 156.8125-156.8375 MHz bands to the mobile-satellite service (MSS) (Earth-to-space) on a primary basis for Federal and non-Federal use, limited to the reception of Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) broadcast messages from ships. The FCC also amended Part 80 to permit ships to transmit AIS broadcast messages in these bands, and amended Part 25 to permit MSS satellites to receive in these bands and in the existing AIS bands.
  • Allocate the 5000-5091 MHz band to the aeronautical mobile (route) service (AM(R)S) on a primary basis for Federal and non-Federal use. AM(R)S use of the 5000-5030 MHz band extends the tuning range for the recently-established Aeronautical Mobile Airport Communications System (AeroMACS) that will support surface applications at airports. AM(R)S use of the 5030-5091 MHz band will support unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).

Most of the rules will become effective 30 days after the publication of the Report and Order in the Federal Register. However, Sections 97.3, 97.15(c), 97.301(b) (d), 97.303(g), 97.305(c), and 97.313(k)-(l), because Section 97.303(g)(2) contains a new information collection requirement that requires approval by OMB under the PRA.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast, Richard Rubino and Cary Mitchell.

FCC Provides Guidance to CMRS Providers on E911 Location Compliance

On March 30, the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau issued a Public Notice in which it provided guidance to Commercial Mobile Radio Service (CMRS) providers on filing their certifications of compliance with E911 location accuracy benchmark. The initial benchmark, which requires CMRS providers to provide, as of April 3, 2017, dispatchable location or x/y location (latitude and longitude) within 50 meters for 40 percent of all wireless 911 calls, must be certified by June 2, 2017.

Specifically, according to the Public Notice, a CMRS provider will be presumed to have met the two-year benchmark set forth at 47 CFR § 20.18(i)(2)(i) if it certifies either of the following by June 2, 2017:

  • As of April 3, 2017, (1) it provides service and reports live call data from one or more of the six Test Cities; (2) it is providing dispatchable location or x/y location information within 50 meters for 40 percent of all wireless 911 calls, (3) it has deployed the indoor location technology or technologies used in its networks consistent with the manner in which such technologies have been tested in the test bed, and (4) its deployment of location technologies throughout its coverage area is consistent with its deployment of the same technologies in the areas that are used for live call data reporting.
  • As of April 3, 2017, (1) it does not provide service or report live call data in one or more of the Test Cities, (2) it is providing dispatchable location or x/y location information within 50 meters for 40 percent of all wireless 911 calls, (3) it has deployed the indoor location technology or technologies used in its networks consistent with the manner in which such technologies have been tested in the test bed, and (4) it has verified based on its own live call data that it is in compliance with the two-year benchmark set forth at 47 CFR § 20.18(i)(2)(i)(B)(1).

The certification must be signed by an officer or director of the CMRS provider who is familiar with and has responsibility for the provider’s indoor location accuracy compliance.

Carriers interested in obtaining assistance with the filing should contact the firm for more information.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Cary Mitchell and Sal Taillefer.

Comment Deadlines Established on Separations Freeze FNPRM

On April 2, the FCC published its Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in which it proposed a further eighteen month extension of the freeze of jurisdictional separations category relationships and cost allocation factors for rate-of-return incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs). Comments are due April 17, and reply comments are due April 24.

As we reported in a previous edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, the FCC is proposing to extend the freeze to allow the Joint Board sufficient time to consider the impact of recent reforms on the separations rules and to allow the FCC the opportunity to fashion a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that “benefits from the Joint Board’s consideration of how best to approach separations reform.”

In 2001, the FCC froze, on an interim basis, the Part 36 jurisdictional separation rules for a five-year period beginning July 1, 2001. Over time, the FCC has repeatedly extended the freeze, which is currently set to expire on June 30, 2017.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

Chairman Pai Announces Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force

On April 3, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced the formation of the Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force to implement the upcoming Universal Service Fund-related auctions. The Task Force will oversee both the Connect America Fund Phase II (CAF-II) and Mobility Fund II (MF-II) auctions.

Chairman Pai named Chelsea Fallon as Director of the Task Force, with Michael Janson and Kirk Burgee as Deputy Directors. Thom Parisi will serve as the Chief of Staff of the Task Force. Senior leaders from across the agency will also serve on the Task Force, including representatives from the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, the Wireline Competition Bureau, the Office of Strategic Policy and Analysis, the Office of the Managing Director, and the Office of General Counsel.

Chairman Pai said, “I’m pleased that we continue to move forward aggressively to close the digital divide in the United States. The Task Force I announce today will help ensure that taxpayer funds are allocated efficiently for rural broadband deployment and that all Americans who want Internet access are able to get it.”

Currently, Chelsea Fallon is Deputy Chief, Industry Analysis and Technology Division, Wireline Competition Bureau; Michael Janson is Assistant Bureau Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau; Kirk Burgee is Associate Bureau Chief and Chief of Staff, Wireline Competition Bureau; and Thom Parisi is Legal Advisor, Wireline Competition Bureau.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast.


Post-Auction Procedures, File Formats Available for Incentive Auction Results

On March 31, the FCC issued a Public Notice announcing the availability of educational materials regarding incentive auction data files for both the reverse auction (Auction 1001) and forward auction (Auction 1002), and the immediate post-auction process for the forward auction. This includes documents specifying the formats of the results files for each auction and other files that will be publicly available after release of the Incentive Auction Closing and Channel Reassignment Public Notice.

The FCC also added an online tutorial for the immediate post-auction process, designed to help forward auction bidders familiarize themselves with the steps that will follow the conclusion of the auction. The tutorial provides a timeline of the immediate post-auction process for the forward auction, a preview of the Incentive Auction Closing and Channel Reassignment Public Notice, information about making post-auction payments and requesting refunds, and information about the licensing process.


MAY 1: FCC FORM 499-Q, TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPORTING WORKSHEET. All telecommunications common carriers that expect to contribute more than $10,000 to federal Universal Service Fund (USF) support mechanisms must file this quarterly form. The FCC has modified this form in light of its decision to establish interim measures for USF contribution assessments. The form contains revenue information from the prior quarter plus projections for the next quarter. Form 499-Q relates only to USF contributions. It does not relate to the cost recovery mechanisms for the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) Fund, the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), and the shared costs of local number portability (LNP), which are covered in the annual Form 499-A that is due April 1.

MAY 26: STUDY AREA BOUNDARY RECERTIFICATION. In addition to the obligation to submit updated information when study area boundaries change, all ILECs are required to recertify their study area boundary data every two years. The recertification is due this year by May 26, 2017. Where the state commission filed the study area boundary data for an ILEC, the state commission should submit the recertification. However, where the state commission did not submit data for the ILEC and the ILEC submitted the study area boundary data, then the ILEC should submit the recertification by May 26, 2017.

MAY 31: FCC FORM 395, EMPLOYMENT REPORT. Common carriers, including wireless carriers, with 16 or more full-time employees must file their annual Common Carrier Employment Reports (FCC Form 395) by May 31. This report tracks carrier compliance with rules requiring recruitment of minority employees. Further, the FCC requires all common carriers to report any employment discrimination complaints they received during the past year. That information is also due on May 31.

The FCC encourages carriers to complete the discrimination report requirement by filling out Section V of Form 395, rather than submitting a separate report. Clients who would like assistance in filing Form 395 should contact the firm.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Richard Rubino.

Calendar At-A-Glance

Apr. 12 – Comments are due on Mobility Fund Phase II FNPRM.
Apr. 12 – Deadline to file opposition to disclosure of 4G Form 477 data.
Apr. 17 – Comments are due on Separations Freeze FNPRM.
Apr. 23 – Comments on Section IV A, B, and F of VRS NPRM are due.
Apr. 24 – Reply comments are due on Separations Freeze FNPRM.
Apr. 27 – Reply comments are due on Mobility Fund Phase II FNPRM.

May 1 – FCC Form 499-Q (Quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) is due.
May 4 – Comments on Regulatory Flexibility Act Rule Review and Elimination Proceeding are due.
May 4 – Reply comments on Section IV A, B, and F of VRS NPRM are due.
May 8 – Comments on State of Mobile Wireless Competition Report are due.
May 17 – Short Form Tariff Review Plans are due.
May 26 – Study Area Boundary Recertification is due.
May 31 – FCC Form 395 (Annual Employment Report) is due.
May 31 – Comments on Short Form Tariff Review Plans are due.

Jun. 1 – Deadline to increase local residential rates above $18 to avoid reductions in support.
Jun. 2 – Deadline for CMRS to certify compliance with E911 location requirements.
Jun. 7 – Reply comments on Short Form Tariff Review Plans are due.
Jun. 7 – Reply comments on State of Mobile Wireless Competition Report are due.
Jun. 16 – 15-Day Tariff Filings are due.
Jun. 23 – Petitions regarding 15-Day Tariff Filings are due.
Jun. 26 – 7-Day Tariff Filings are due.
Jun. 27 – Replies to Petitions regarding 15-Day Tariff Filings are due.
Jun. 29 – Petitions regarding 7-Day Tariff Filings are due (NOON EST).
Jun. 30 – Replies to Petitions regarding 7-Day Tariff Filings are due (NOON EST).

This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm.


Harold Mordkofsky, 202-828-5520,
Benjamin H. Dickens, Jr., 202-828-5510,
Gerard J. Duffy, 202-828-5528,
John A. Prendergast, 202-828-5540,
Richard D. Rubino, 202-828-5519,
Mary J. Sisak, 202-828-5554,
D. Cary Mitchell, 202-828-5538,
Salvatore Taillefer, Jr., 202-828-5562,

At F.C.C., Obama-Era Rules on Chopping Block

APRIL 5, 2017
The New York Times

The seal of the Federal Communications Commission hangs behind commissioner Tom Wheeler’s chair inside the hearing room at the FCC headquarters  Credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

WASHINGTON — When Congress voted to overturn internet privacy rules last month, the swift action by Republican lawmakers sent a clear message: They were just getting started.

The next target is net neutrality, which is the guarantee that all internet content is equally accessible. That could be followed by cuts in broadband subsidies for low-income households and a relaxation in rules preventing media consolidation in local markets.

Republican regulators and lawmakers have been waiting for this moment. Coordinating across the government, they are putting several telecommunications and technology policies created during the Obama administration on the chopping block. Already, Ajit Pai, the Republican chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, who was appointed to the agency by President Barack Obama and named to lead it by President Trump, has begun chipping away at the low-income broadband subsidy and net neutrality rules created by his Democratic predecessor.

“There was a good bit of overreach by the past F.C.C. that caused a lot of confusion,” said Representative Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, who was vice chairwoman for President Trump’s transition. “We are going to have technology and telecommunications policy that is light touch.”

In a major philosophical shift from the Obama administration, Republican leaders have said they will look for proof of harm before creating new regulations for telecom firms. They believe antitrust and consumer protection laws suffice for government oversight of the sector.

“The F.C.C. needs a more evidence-based approach,” said Roslyn Layton, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute who was on Mr. Trump’s F.C.C. transition team. “No one is writing in and asking for Title 2 reclassification of broadband. Consumers are complaining about unwanted calls and billing problems.”

The changes have been a boon for telecommunications and cable firms that had for years fought unsuccessfully against a Democratic-led F.C.C.

They have cheered Mr. Trump’s decision to renominate Mr. Pai after his term ends in June. They want to overturn net neutrality and other rules so they can start offering new business plans that consumer groups have protested.

Commissioner Ajit Pai photographed in his office on August 16th, 2013.
Credit: Christopher Gregory for The New York Times

“The repeal of net neutrality would be a clear positive for broadband network providers,” analysts at Pacific Crest Securities wrote in a research note after the election. Internet service providers “would be able to charge for access to the network and for ‘fast lanes,’ which would increase potential monetization.”

Momentum is with the Republicans. Last month, they voted to overturn privacy rules (scheduled to take effect later this year) that required internet service providers like AT&T and Comcast to get permission from a customer before tracking and selling data browsing and app activity. Mr. Trump signed the measure on April 3.

Lawmakers said the F.C.C.’s rules were much stricter than any privacy requirements placed on web firms like Google and Facebook. They argued that the privacy watchdog duties should fall to the Federal Trade Commission, which does not have strong privacy regulations but requires companies to self-police the privacy policies they promise to customers.

Republicans lawmakers moved against the privacy rules under the Congressional Review Act, a procedure used to overturn new agency rules.

The lawmakers say their next target is the F.C.C.’s declaration in 2015 that broadband should be treated like a common carrier service, such as the phone. That utility-like categorization strapped new rules on broadband providers.

The F.C.C. chairman and lawmakers have promised to undo those rules soon. Ms. Blackburn said in an interview that the F.C.C. will likely create an order to overturn them.

Democrats and consumer groups have protested, saying the internet has become essential for work, education and commerce, and needs greater oversight.

“The recent weeks are prologue, and I am fearful that we are moving in a direction that will unravel and undo some incredible gains we’ve made for consumers,” said Mignon Clyburn, the sole Democratic commissioner at the F.C.C.

The reclassification of broadband also served in 2015 as the foundation for the F.C.C.’s net neutrality rules, which ban broadband providers from blocking or slowing down of traffic on the internet. Google, Facebook and Netflix have been the strongest corporate backers of net neutrality, but smaller start-ups could be most affected.

Credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call, via Associated Press

Without strong net neutrality rules, an internet service provider like Verizon or Charter could give preference to certain content, making it harder for an independent streaming service like Vimeo to compete.

An example is AT&T’s free service offering mobile streaming of DirecTV videos to customers that does not count against data limits. Consumer groups have balked, saying the practice puts competing video providers at a disadvantage because their videos do count against those customers’ monthly data limits.

Mr. Pai has already signaled his approval of such “zero rating” programs, saying they did not appear to violate net neutrality — and that they are popular with consumers. In January, he closed an investigation into zero-rating promotional streaming programs by AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile.

But net neutrality will not be easy to undo. A federal appeals court upheld the regulations last year in a case brought by Verizon, Comcast, AT&T and other internet service providers. Congress could try to overturn the rules but could not use the Congressional Review Act to do so because net neutrality was created more than a year ago.

Republicans will also look for ways to cut fat in programs they deem wasteful or abused. One target could be the Lifeline broadband subsidy for low-income households. Mr. Pai prevented nine providers from offering the subsidy weeks into his role at the F.C.C.

He has also pointed to longtime media ownership rules that prevent a local TV station from also owning a newspaper in the same town. F.C.C. rules also prevent sharing of resources between TV stations. Mr. Pai has said the convergence of tech and media have made such rules too outdated. Companies like Netflix and Google are a bigger threat to broadcast television stations than media consolidation, Mr. Pai said.

The greatest uncertainty surrounds telecom and tech mergers. AT&T’s proposed $85 billion merger with Time Warner is being reviewed by antitrust officials at the Justice Department. Republicans are expected to be generally more permissive of mergers, but Mr. Trump remains the wild card.

The president has said he would not allow the merger, and analysts say his complaints about news coverage by CNN, which is owned by Time Warner, could complicate the approval. But Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said he would not be influenced by politics in decisions at the agency.

“This will be the first big test,” said Bradley Tusk, who leads the investment firm Tusk Ventures. “If you aren’t in Trump’s wheelhouse, expect to get a more traditional Republican look at mergers.”

Source: The New York Times  

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