|FRIDAY - FEBRUARY 9, 2007 - ISSUE NO. 248|
Dear friends of Wireless Messaging,
I haven't been able to find out much about the new owners of SkyTel and their plans for the future. I guess they like drag racing. I found the following news yesterday:
Their logo is now on the Prudhomme Racing site. I am hoping to get acquainted with the new management soon so I can let you all know about their plans. SkyTel has always been a good company. They have been the leaders in innovation and have had some of our industry's best talent. I hope they continue to do well. Stay tuned.
I think many of our readers enjoyed the article on Simulcasting last week by Dennis Cameron. Dennis is certainly one of the pioneers of this technology and helped make Paging what it became. As far as I know, there is still no other technology that can match Paging's ability to transmit wireless messages to many people—quickly and efficiently—not even close.
Now on to more news and views.
A new issue of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter gets 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 Internet. 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 Data 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 reader's comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Data 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.
NOTE: This newsletter is best viewed at screen resolutions of 800x600 (good) or 1024x768 (better). Any current revision of web browser should work fine. Please notify me of any problems with viewing. This site is compliant with XHTML 1.0 transitional coding for easy access from wireless devices. (XML 1.0/ISO 8859-1.)
The Choice Of Private Vs. Public ReFLEX Systems By The Public Safety Community.
By Ron Mercer
An additional advantage of ReFLEX technology lies in the fact that, unlike other technologies now being aggressively promoted to public safety agencies, two implementations of ReFLEX two-way capabilities are today available:
2) Evaluation Of The Choices:
In light of the current decline in the market for public paging service amongst the general public, paging service providers are understandably interested in promoting their public systems amongst public safety agencies.
Most importantly, public paging systems are nationwide in nature which, in concert with standard ReFLEX capabilities, facilitates “roaming” — the ability for public safety users to remain in full communication with their agencies when they travel from their normal operating area to other parts of the country.
From a public safety agency viewpoint, however, special additional considerations relative to public and private systems are significant as tabulated below:
3) Additional Considerations:
Most importantly, the quantities of ReFLEX pagers potentially purchased by the public safety community are urgently required by ReFLEX manufacturers in order that they can continue to develop and enhance ReFLEX products for both the public and private markets. Manufacturers cannot be expected to continue to develop products for a shrinking market, and, therefore, failure to realize the public safety opportunity will impact negatively on the activities of paging carriers as well!
To realize the potential that public safety offers, the paging industry must develop processes and techniques that permit all segments of the industry, including manufacturers and carriers, to participate and benefit.
A follow-up article is being prepared. Comments regarding the foregoing are encouraged.
|AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF PAGING CARRIERS|
|FEATURED ADVERTISERS SUPPORTING THE NEWSLETTER|
USA Mobility Declares Quarterly Dividend
Sets Date for Annual Meeting of Shareholders
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb 07, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ — USA Mobility, Inc. (Nasdaq: USMO), a leading provider of wireless messaging services, today announced that its Board of Directors has declared a regular quarterly dividend of $0.65 per share of common stock. The dividend will be paid on March 15, 2007 to shareholders of record on February 22, 2007. The Company expects the entire amount of the dividend to be paid as a return of capital.
In addition, USA Mobility announced that its Annual Meeting of Stockholders will be held at 10:00 a.m., Eastern Time, on Wednesday, May 16, 2007 at the offices of Latham & Watkins LLP, 885 Third Avenue, New York, NY. The record date for those stockholders entitled to vote at the Annual Meeting is April 6, 2007.
About USA Mobility
USA Mobility, Inc., headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, is a comprehensive provider of reliable and affordable wireless communications solutions to the healthcare, government, large enterprise and emergency response sectors. As a single-source provider, USA Mobility's focus is on the business-to-business marketplace and supplying wireless connectivity solutions to more than 80 percent of the Fortune 1000 companies. The Company's one-way paging and advanced two-way messaging services run over its nationwide networks and cover more than 90% of the U.S. population. In addition, USA Mobility offers mobile voice and data services through Sprint Nextel, including BlackBerry devices and GPS location applications. The Company's product offerings include customized wireless connectivity systems for the healthcare, government and other campus environments. USA Mobility also offers M2M telemetry solutions for numerous applications that include asset tracking, utility meter reading and other remote device monitoring applications on a national scale. For further information visit www.usamobility.com.
Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act: Statements contained herein or in prior press releases which are not historical fact, such as statements regarding USA Mobility's expectations for future operating and financial performance, are forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause USA Mobility's actual results to be materially different from the future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expectations include, but are not limited to, declining demand for paging products and services, the ability to continue to reduce operating expenses, future capital needs, competitive pricing pressures, competition from both traditional paging services and other wireless communications services, government regulation, reliance upon third-party providers for certain equipment and services, as well as other risks described from time to time in periodic reports and registration statements filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Although USA Mobility believes the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectations will be attained. USA Mobility disclaims any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking statements.
CONTACT: Bob Lougee (703) 721-3080
Source: USA Mobility
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PATH offering free e-mail service alerts
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
Heading out to grab the PATH train? Check your e-mail first.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is offering free electronic alerts of service troubles and changes to any of the rail line's daily 227,000 users.
"PATHAlerts" will notify riders by computer, cell phone, pager, Blackberry or other hand-held device of any delays exceeding 15 minutes. All that's required is registering with the agency. So far, the new program has signed up 2,700 customers and the Port Authority is increasing publicity.
"The program makes a lot of sense because our society lives in a fast-paced time, where information is so rapidly disseminated," said Tony Ciavolella, a Port Authority spokesman, noting customers may identify specific times and lines. "What's good about this is that passengers can customize their information preferences."
Riders can join by logging onto www.panynj.info and clicking on the link to PATHAlerts. There is no charge, but the agency cautions that Internet service providers and cell phone/pager providers may have their own fees. The agency promises it will not give or sell customers' e-mail addresses to other parties.
Ciavolella said the biggest sign-up so far came on Jan. 8, when 575 joined on the same day a mysterious smell wafted over the metro area and led to a shutdown of the PATH line from Hoboken and Jersey City to 33rd Street in Manhattan for nearly 90 minutes.
Yesterday, NJ Transit riders leaving Manhattan found blue and white fliers on their train seats, touting the Port Authority's program with the lead-in: "Be the first to know about a delay or service change on your PATH train."
Ciavolella said the e-mail notifications would be sent out whenever delays exceed 15 minutes and also would apprise riders whenever troubles force PATH and NJ Transit to cross-honor tickets.
NJ Transit started an e-mail notification program, called "My Transit," in 2001 that has grown to 38,000 participants. Last month, for example, it sent out 338 alerts to rail customers and 93 to bus and light rail riders, according to the agency.
Dan Stessel, an agency spokesman, said the notification program has proved popular for NJ Transit riders.
"They want the ability to get information at their fingertips that is usable and can make a difference in the quality of their commutes," said Stessel.
Ron Marsico can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (973) 392-7860.
Source: The Star-Ledger
Messaging & Cellular
Call Or E-mail For More Information
CommtechWireless Expands Into Europe
Tuesday, 6th of February 2007
CommtechWireless, supplier of integrated messaging solutions for mission critical and hospitality environments has opened a European branch of the company in Denmark.
In a considerable coup for the company, CommtechWireless Europe will be overseen by European CEO Mikael Andersen. Andersen is the former VP Distribution Sales at KIRK Telecom A/S – a key player in the DECT wireless telephony market.
What drew Mikael Andersen to CommtechWireless Europe was the belief that the company product offering was one currently missing from the market. He explains, "The trend within professional telephony is coming to a turning point. Now, wireless handsets with fancy features are not enough. Applications are needed to enhance their functionality and here messaging is a key factor."
CommtechWireless’ flagship product CommtechMessenger and its mid-level solution counterpart the Fusion Series, allow businesses to integrate disparate technologies with a single messaging platform. So, for example, in hospitals nurses can receive emergency alerts, security alarms can be monitored and doctors contacted with the integration between the CommtechWireless products, nurse call systems, alarms and DECT wireless telephony.
This integration capability has ensured CommtechWireless Europe’s focus on building business relationships with the key players in the DECT and WiFi arena. This focus has already seen the certification of the Fusion Series and CommtechMessenger by SpectraLink and the development of two way integration between those products and WiFi and DECT handsets.
CommtechWireless CEO Nathan Buzza explains the company's wireless telephony focus is well served strategically with operations in Europe.
"The DECT and WiFi market has exploded in Europe and the United States. The enhanced feature set we can offer that technology means we have mutual interests with important technology companies like SpectraLink, KIRK, Cisco and others. We are already operating out of the United States on a large scale; it makes sense that we open in Europe to grow our interest there.”
Mr Andersen is confident that the future of CommtechWireless is bright and states that "CommtechWireless is now becoming a true worldwide player represented on all continents. We are truly offering a unique enhancement to existing infrastructure."
CommtechWireless is a leading provider of wireless messaging infrastructure across key Healthcare, Hospitality, Casinos, Emergency Services, Military and Government markets. Installed solutions range from the slot machine management at Monte Casino in South Africa and the nurse call monitoring at Epworth Hospital, Australia to the patron call system at Thank God It’s Friday, Utah and the cordless handset integration at FAO Schwarz, New York City.
GTES has recently made the strategic decision to expanding its development activities to include wireless location technologies; a market that researchers forecast could reach $3.6 billion by 2010. In support of this new strategic direction, GTES has developed SHERLOC™ a complete one-stop wireless location service, providing the flexibility of being protocol neutral and network agnostic. Targeted at business customers who need to track their high-value shipments or better manage their service or delivery fleets, SHERLOC™ is a hosted application that combines configuration flexibility with ease of use.
GTES is offering SHERLOC™ services both directly and through authorized resellers. If your company has an interest in finding out how location services can enhance your revenue stream, and has the contacts and expertise to make you successful in the location marketplace, please contact us for further information at www.sherlocgps.com and select “Reseller Opportunities,” or call us at 770-754-1666 for more information.
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County Weighs Sirens For Tornado Warnings
Severe Weather Alerts Available For Free On WESH.com
POSTED: 5:47 pm EST February 5, 2007
WINTER SPRINGS, Fla. — A least three tornadoes stormed across Central Florida in the early-morning hours Friday.
Unless people have a weather radio or if their TV was on, there was no warning of the deadly tornadoes tearing through.
But frustrated people wiped out by the tornadoes said they feel a siren system would help them when they're sound asleep or not watching TV, WESH 2 News reported.
There's still obvious damage from the Election Day storm in Seminole County. Those storms were not nearly as powerful as Friday's deadly tornadoes, but it's there that leaders are saying sirens deserve at least a look.
The survival stories continue to amaze, but now that people have spent days picking up the pieces, frustration is setting in.
Many said they want to know why there are no sirens in Florida like there are in so many other parts of the country.
"They have them in Kansas and Oklahoma," one storm victim said.
"If they had a siren, even if they could do it an hour ahead of time, they might be good," another victim said.
"For a long time, we've been suggesting that people use NOAA weather radios," said Alan Harris of Seminole County's Emergency Management team.
That has been the battle cry from public safety officials. A simple weather radio costs about $20 or $30, and it is programmed for any weather warnings in your area before the severe weather arrives.
"A NOAA weather radio is as much of a lifesaver as a smoke detector in a house," Harris said.
"We have a siren system. We have the NOAA radios. That is a siren system," said Jerry Smith of Lake County's Emergency Management.
Officials said Florida storms pop up too quickly and move too fast to make sirens effective. They said homes these days are more tightly sealed, so with windows closed, the sirens will be hard to hear.
And to have enough of them might be too expensive.
All that being said, Seminole County did establish a task force on Monday to see if sirens might work.
When you are awake and in your home, your No. 1 source for weather information is WESH 2 News, WESH.com and WESH 2 Weather Plus on Bright House channel 1021.
You can sign up for free weather alerts for your county on WESH.com's severe weather page. When a watch or warning is issued, we will send an alert to your e-mail address, cell phone or pager.
To sign up, visit www.wesh.com/severeweather. First, enter your e-mail address and the county about which you want to receive alerts (you can sign up for multiple counties later in the sign-up process). If you would also like the alerts to be sent to your cell phone and/or pager, check the box.
On the next screen, if you would like to also receive the alerts on your cell phone and/or pager, enter those numbers in the fields. The numbers must be entered in an e-mail format, such as email@example.com (Call your wireless company to find out how your number is formatted).
After you fill out those fields, click the number of boxes that correspond to how many boxes you entered numbers in (i.e. Primary E-mail, Alternate E-mail 1, Alternate E-mail 2).
Once you've successfully signed up, log into your account to manage it, including adding additional counties if needed.
We at Unication have listened and delivered.
About Unication Co., Ltd.
|BLOOSTON, MORDKOFSKY, DICKENS, DUFFY & PRENDERGAST, LLP|
BloostonLaw Telecom Update
700 MHz Auction May Take Place in August
FCC Seeks Comment On Cyren Call’s Request For Upper 700 MHz Spectrum, Without Auction Process
Senator McCain Plans Legislation That Essentially Supports Cyren Call’s Proposal
The FCC has requested comment on Cyren Call Communications Corp.’s petition for rulemaking that seeks reallocation of 30 MHz of commercial spectrum in the 747-762 MHz and 777-792 MHz bands (i.e., most of TV channels 60-62 and 65-67 in the “Upper 700 MHz band”) and assignment of that spectrum without auction to a single licensee for deployment of a nationwide, broadband network for shared commercial and public safety use. And U.S. Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) plans to introduce legislation that essentially supports that proposal.
At the same time, the FCC 8th Floor has indicated that the Commission may try to hold the Upper 700 MHz band auction (Auction No. 31), as well as an auction of leftover “Lower 700 MHz band” licenses, as early as this August. The significance of a potentially accelerated auction schedule for our clients cannot be determined until it is known whether the FCC will go along with the pending proposal to reallocate one or more of the 700 MHz license blocks for Rural Service Area/MSA-sized licenses. If these smaller licenses are not available, rural telcos and small businesses are not likely to be able to participate in the auction.
The proposed reallocation of TV channels 60-62 and 65-67 would essentially gut the upcoming Upper 700 MHz band auction, which Congress has earmarked as a significant revenue source. It would also eliminate the Upper 700 MHz C-Block, which a substantial group of small and mid-sized licensees known as the “Balanced Consensus Plan” (including several BloostonLaw rural telephone clients) has identified as one of two spectrum blocks that should be licensed as CMA-sized licenses, so that small businesses and rural telcos will have a realistic opportunity to win these licenses at auction.
The FCC had dismissed Cyren Call’s petition without prejudice last fall, noting that in Section 337(a) of the Communications Act, Congress mandated that the Commission allocate spectrum between 746 MHz and 806 MHz, inclusive by designating 24 MHz of the spectrum “for public safety services” and 36 MHz of the spectrum “for commercial use to be assigned by competitive bidding pursuant to Section 309(j).” Thus, the Commission had concluded that Cyren Call’s petition was inconsistent with Sections 337(a) and 309(j)(15)(C)(v)’s auction requirement. As a result, the FCC said it had no authority to act on the petition because Congressional action was needed before the proposal could be implemented. However, the Commission said it would leave the RM-11348 docket open in order to develop a public record (BloostonLaw Telecom Update, November 8, 2006).
In a petition for reconsideration, and in ex parte comments, Cyren Call modified its proposal to address this issue. While recognizing that Congressional action would be necessary, Cyren Call submitted a draft legislative proposal for a Public Safety Broadband Trust (PSBT) that would be organized as a non-stock, non-profit, government-chartered corporation authorized to raise money by selling debt instruments to investors in private financial markets. The monies raised would be used, first, to purchase 30 megahertz of 700 MHz spectrum from the FCC at a price to be determined by the Commission, but not to exceed $5 billion, thereby replacing the funds that might be otherwise obtained at auction. The potential loser here would be the American taxpayer, if the market value of the spectrum would exceed the $5 billion cap.
Cyren Call makes clear that it wants 30 MHz of “Upper 700 MHz” spectrum contiguous with existing public safety spectrum. This would mean virtually the entire Upper 700 MHz band. It is noteworthy that the FCC already has an open proceeding (WT Docket No. 96-86) in which it has proposed a nationwide public safety system in the 700 MHz band (BloostonLaw Telecom Update, January 3 and 10). The Commission proposes to allocate 12 MHz of the 700 MHz public safety spectrum from wideband to broadband use, assign it to a single licensee to operate on a secondary basis, and permit the licensee to provide unconditionally preemptible access to its assigned spectrum to commercial service providers on a secondary basis. Comments in this proceeding are due February 26, and replies are due March 12.
Background: The Cyren Call petition for rulemaking was filed on April 27, 2006. A principal in the company is Morgan O’Brien, who was also a principal in Fleet Call, the forerunner of Nextel, which is now Sprint Nextel. No action was taken on the Cyren Call petition until the FCC’s Consumer and Government Affairs Bureau placed it on public notice on October 30, 2006.
The next day, October 31, the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) filed a letter stating that the Cyren Call petition should be dismissed because a similar petition filed by Northrop Grumman Information Technology in 2003 seeking broadband spectrum in the 700 MHz band had previously been dismissed.
CTIA stated, in its November 3 letter, that Cyren Call’s petition is remarkably similar to Northrop’s 2003 proposal. “Indeed, in all relevant respects, it is indistinguishable. Both filings were made by commercial entities, both sought the reallocation of commercial 700 MHz spectrum (in fact overlapping spectrum) for public safety operations, and thus both were inconsistent with Section 337(a). Indeed there has been no change in the statutory and regulatory framework surrounding the petitions since 2003 that should warrant a departure from Commission precedent.”
Cyren Call Response: Interestingly, Cyren Call, in a November 2 letter, acknowledged that it was seeking a legislative solution to the Congressional mandate that the spectrum in question was covered by auction. However, Cyren Call argued that the Commission should not foreclose public debate over spectrum that will not be available for use until 2009. “Having waited six months for the Commission to seek their input, the public safety community should not have this opportunity stopped by CTIA’s untimely assertion that a matter of such significant public interest does not even warrant public debate,” Cyren Call said. During the next day or so, a dozen firefighting associations submitted letters or comments in support of Cyren Call’s position.
The FCC then dismissed the Cyren Call petition without prejudice, but left the docket open. Cyren Call subsequently filed a petition for reconsideration. And on February 2, the Commission placed the proposal on public notice. Oppositions to the petition will be due 15 days from the date of publication of the notice in the Federal Register. Replies to oppositions will be due 10 days thereafter.
McCain Backs Cyren Call
Just prior to the Commission’s public notice, Senator John McCain announced that he will introduce legislation that essentially supports Cyren Call’s proposal.
McCain’s measure would establish a new nationwide, state-of-the-art public safety broadband network to promote interoperable communications among first responders. CTIA opposes McCain’s initiative.
According to McCain, "the federal government has made strides in developing a comprehensive, interoperable emergency communications plan, establishing equipment standards, funding the purchase of emergency and interoperable communications equipment, and belatedly making additional radio spectrum available. But none of this is enough. We must do more."
The network, which would be created by licensing an additional 30 MHz of radio spectrum in the upper 700 MHz band to a Public Safety Broadband Trust, would provide first responders seamless nationwide roaming capability and allow for the real time transmission of data, the Senator said in a January 31 statement.
"It is now time to think big and bold and solve the interoperability crisis once and for all. We are at a watershed moment where we can provide more of the 700 MHz spectrum to solve our national public safety communications crisis and greatly enhance our emergency preparedness. If we do not act now, this valuable spectrum will be auctioned off and this opportunity will be lost forever," Mr. McCain continued.
"I fought for many years to clear the 700 MHz spectrum for first responders and now that there is a firm date for the availability of this spectrum, we should ensure that enough spectrum is being provided to first responders. That is why I support the allocation to public safety and the creation of a Public Safety Broadband Trust and will introduce legislation in the near future to provide this spectrum to these valiant police officers, fire fighters, sheriffs and other first responders."
The 9/11 Commission’s Final Report states that: "Command and control decisions were affected by the lack of and increased assignment of radio spectrum to public safety entities," and the bill that Senator McCain will introduce would finally implement that recommendation, according to his statement.
The allocation of an additional 30 MHz of Upper 700 MHz spectrum and the creation of a Public Safety Broadband Trust have been endorsed in resolutions passed by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, International Association of Fire Chiefs, Major Cities Chiefs Association, Major Counties Sheriffs Association, National Sheriffs Association, the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials-International, the Western Fire Chiefs Association and others.
Cyren Call Chairman Morgan O'Brien is scheduled to appear before the Senate Commerce Committee Thursday to lobby for legislation that would allow the company to build its public/private broadband emergency communications network using 30 MHz of Upper 700 MHz band spectrum. But the Consumer Electronics Association and the High Tech DTV Coalition have released research that argues that reallocating the spectrum would endanger the DTV transition, and would actually hinder, rather than help, improvements in public safety communications. The research argues that the problem with emergency communications is not the amount of spectrum, which it says is not in short supply for first responders, but in interoperability, and that setting aside more than the 24 MHz already earmarked would leave less for the advanced wireless services the government is trying to promote.
As noted above, comment dates on the Cyber Call petition will be determined upon publication of the FCC’s public notice in the Federal Register. Interested clients, however, should contact us as soon as possible with respect to this proceeding.
Source: Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy and Prendergast, LLP
For additional information, contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Emergency Responders Ask Lawmakers for More Spectrum
Police and fire organizations called on Congress to allow more radio spectrum for communications interoperability than they're due to get in 2009.
Grant Gross, IDG News Service
Police and fire organizations called on the U.S. Congress to give them more radio spectrum for communications interoperability than the 24MHz they're due to get in early 2009.
Representatives of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the International Association of Chiefs of Police on Thursday told a U.S. Senate committee that they need an additional 30MHz of spectrum. The government is scheduled to auction spectrum to commercial users as U.S. television stations abandon the upper 700MHz spectrum band in February 2009, under a law passed last year.
The additional spectrum would help public safety agencies deploy broadband communications systems that would fix the radio interoperability problems that plagued emergency workers following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, said Charles Werner, fire chief for Charlottsville, Virginia. Congress must act before the spectrum is auctioned to private companies in the next year, he said.
"I encourage Congress to take advantage of this very limited, one-time opportunity," Werner said. "We cannot suggest too strongly the urgent and identified need for broadband capability that public safety can use with assurance that it will work when needed, be available when needed, and is affordable."
But some members of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee questioned the plan to put the additional 30MHz of spectrum into a public safety broadband trust.
The new spectrum plan, first advanced by Cyren Call Communications Corp. last April, could potentially cost the government billions of dollars in lost auction revenue, said Senator Ted Stevens, an Alaska Republican. The committee, in its DTV (digital television) transition bill, budgeted at least US$10 billion to be raised by the spectrum auctions, with $1 billion going to fund emergency communications interoperability efforts.
The Cyren Call plan is "impossible for us to do fiscally," Stevens said.
Stevens' criticism echoed the High Tech DTV Coalition, a group of technology vendors, which on Tuesday called on the Senate to stick to the original spectrum plan.
Cyren Call Chairman Morgan O'Brien said the company's plan calls for the broadband trust to raise $5 billion from private investors to pay for the 30MHz of spectrum. Private investors would pay for expensive public safety broadband networks, instead of Congress or local governments, he said.
Nearly all public safety organizations support the broadband trust concept, O'Brien added. "This is a crying out for help," he said. "We're sending men and women into dangerous situations every day, knowing their devices are inferior."
But the spectrum auctions could raise billions of dollars more than what the Cyren Call plan offers to pay, Stevens said. And Steve Largent president and CEO of CTIA, a trade group representing wireless carriers, questioned whether the broadband trust would find enough investors to fund a broadband wireless rollout for public safety, especially in rural areas.
Other senators suggested alternative approaches to the Cyren Call plan. Senator John Sununu, a New Hampshire Republican, suggested that public safety agencies could better use the 25MHz of spectrum they already have. Senator Maria Cantwell, a Washington state Democrat, said public safety agencies in her state and elsewhere are finding success using existing spectrum with radio over IP (Internet Protocol) devices.
This "boot-strap" approach using open standards and radio over IP could cost as little as $300 million across the U.S., as opposed to an average of about $1 billion per state using other equipment, said David Billstrom, chairman and CEO of public safety consulting group National Interop Inc. and a volunteer firefighter.
|EUROPEAN MOBILE MESSAGING ASSOCIATION|
|EUROPEAN MOBILE MESSAGING ASSOCIATION|
|FEATURED ADVERTISERS SUPPORTING THE NEWSLETTER|
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National Emergency Response Planning Committee
Report to the ARRL Board of Directors
The achievements of volunteer Amateur Radio communicators in times of disaster cannot be commended too highly. In dangerous and demanding environments, they get the job done when simple operability, let alone interoperability, is beyond some organizations which soak up huge numbers of taxpayer dollars and have permanent bureaucracies in charge of preparedness.
Amateurs have served in the extraordinary disasters of the 21st century with great personal courage, skill, and generosity. No one having any familiarity with the facts would say otherwise, and nothing in this report should be interpreted as diminishing their accomplishment.
However, the ARRL as a national organization could have done better and must do better in the future. Some changes have already taken place, such as enhancements of W1AW’s capabilities as a disaster communications center, introduction of the Ham-Aid program for providing equipment to the field, improvement of the Headquarters teleconferencing system, and increased emphasis on cross-training of the Headquarters Staff. Additional changes are needed not only in what the League does but in how we think about what we do as a national organization when extraordinary disasters happen.
Disaster preparedness is a moving target, moving faster all the time. No recommendations, no plans, no systems should be considered as graven in stone and the permanent answers for all circumstances and hazards. The level of professional expertise in emergency communications and emergency management among Amateurs in the USA is growing, and the expectations these Amateurs place upon their League to provide first-rate leadership and guidance is growing, too. This committee appreciates the opportunity to contribute to the ARRL’s ability to provide that leadership and guidance. We trust that the process will continue. If “lessons learned” are not followed by “behaviors changed,” then the lessons have not been learned at all.
To read the the complete report, it is available at:
The American Radio Relay League's new EmComm website is live at:
• FIREHOUSES • SCHOOLS • PUBLIC FACILITIES • GOVERNMENT FACILITIES • EMERGENCY ROOMS •
WHAT DO FEDERAL AND STATE GOVERNMENT AGENCIES, FORTUNE 500 COMPANIES, WISPS, HAVE IN COMMON?
THEY ALL USE NIGHTHAWK.
Nighthawk Systems Inc. manufactures low cost and reliable remote control products for fire house alerting, volunteer alerting, activation of warning signs and sirens, and a number of applications for public safety. The Company manufactures the EA1 and the FAS-8 which have been designed specifically for these applications. Both products are paging based and will work with any public or private paging network. They are available in all VHF, UHF, and 900 MHz paging frequencies. The products can serve as the primary notification system or an excellent, low-cost backup to existing systems.
The EA1 is the solution for remotely activating public warning signage. Examples include tornado sirens, flash flood warnings, fire danger, Amber Alert, icy roads, etc. The EA1 can also send text messages to scrolling signs. This can occur in conjunction with the activation of audible alarms and visual strobes. This is ideal for public notification in buildings, schools, hotels, factories, etc. The group call feature allows for any number of signs or flashing lights to be activated at the same time over a wide geographic area. In addition, the EA1 Emergency Alert is the perfect solution for low cost yet highly effective alerting of volunteer fire fighters in their home. When activated the EA1 will emit an audible alarm and activate the power outlet on the units faceplate. A common setup is to simply place the EA1 on a table and plug a lamp into the faceplate. When paged from dispatch or any touch tone phone the EA1 will awaken the fire fighter to a lit room. As an option the EA1 can be ordered with a serial cable, allowing for attachment of a serial printer. When paged the alphanumeric message will be printed out at the same time the alarm sounds and the outlet is activated. The EA1 is an ideal complement to alphanumeric belt pagers common to volunteers.
The FAS-8 is designed for activating one or more relays in a firehouse and if desired, printing the alphanumeric message to a serial printer. For this application the FAS-8 is set to activate upon receiving the proper paging cap code sent from 911 dispatch. Up to eight different devices can be activated all with individual time functions. The most common devices to turn on include the PA amplifier, audible wake up alarm, and house lights. The most common device turned off is the stove. The FAS-8 can accept up to 8 different cap codes and have separate relay and time functions per cap code. This allows for different alerting to be accomplished at the same physical location depending upon which cap code is sent. This can be very helpful when fire crews and medical crews are housed in the same building.
Put the innovative technology of Nighthawk to work for you. For more information on any of our products or services, please contact us.
Nighthawk Systems, Inc.
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Contact us: ParkMagic
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DANIELS™ ELECTRONICS LTD.
Please click here to e-mail Ayrewave.
$500.00 FLAT RATE
TAPS—Texas Association of Paging Services is looking for partners on 152.480 MHz. Our association currently uses Echostar, formerly Spacecom, for distribution of our data and a large percentage of our members use the satellite to key their TXs. We have a CommOneSystems Gateway at the uplink in Chicago with a back-up running 24/7. Our paging coverage area on 152.480 MHz currently encompasses Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Louisiana, and Kansas. The TAPS paging coverage is available to members of our Network on 152.480 MHz for $.005 a transmitter (per capcode per month), broken down by state or regions of states and members receive a credit towards their bill for each transmitter which they provide to our coverage. Members are able to use the satellite for their own use If you are on 152.480 MHz or just need a satellite for keying your own TXs on your frequency we have the solution for you.
TAPS will provide the gateways in Chicago, with Internet backbone and bandwidth on our satellite channel for $ 500.00 (for your system) a month.
Contact Ted Gaetjen @ 1-800-460-7243 or email@example.com CLICK TO E-MAIL
|LETTERS TO THE EDITOR|
From: John Simmons <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: February 2, 2007 4:41:22 PM CST
Subject: Today's newsletter [last week]
This issue is great . . . really good information and a nice balance between the technical and financial. The "Wheel of Paging" was a good article in last week's issue, too.
Please keep up the good work!
John A Simmons
Roger's Two Way Radio
102 Lincoln AV SE
Bemidji MN 56601
V 218-751-3077 800-243-3077
From: Wayne Markis <email@example.com>
Subject: Newsletter on 2/2/2007
Date: February 5, 2007 10:13:40 AM CST
Reading your newsletter is like going to church on Sunday, and hearing that sermon that always hits home for the way your week has been going.
So was this weeks newsletter, when your first subject was the need for Paging to step up and get things done as far as getting Paging to be noticed and connected to a National Alert system.
I thought the question "WHY NOT ?"
THEN, The Florida tornados hit !!! This was a devastating event, and I wish all those that were affected well.
As I woke up watching the news Saturday morning, turned to the Fox News channel's coverage of the situation, I continually heard the following repeated by the tornado victims, "WE HAD NO WARNING" !!!!!
I thought [of] the question "WHY NOT ?"
They later interviewed the FEMA Director, David Paulison. He stated that the Government was working on an Alert system, and had not yet selected one, and he would be discussing that problem with the Florida Governor later on in the day.
Florida didn't have an Alert system ???
I ask the question "WHY NOT ?"
After watching the government work these last few months on setting up a National Alert system, I am beginning to wonder if they are really interested in providing a quick, easy, inexpensive alert system to the General Public, or if this is just turning out to be a huge government payback for the Cellular spectrum auctions of late.
If the Government really wanted to have an Alert system up and running by now, all they had to do was to provide a means of getting the Alerts to the Paging Industry. The Nations paging systems have been setup to provide Alerts to Public Safety for years now. Pagers are readily available at a low cost to anybody. And a lot of the Nation's paging system operators are more than willing and able to provide this service to the General Public at NO cost !
There are also several manufacturers interested in providing some sort of "Home Alert Monitor device" that would monitor the Paging systems for these alerts and then provide the information to the user.
What is NOT available at this time is some means of which the Government would PROVIDE these alerts directly to the Paging carriers so they can be sent out to the public.
And again I ask the question "WHY NOT ?"
If the means of providing this service is available NOW, (and has been since the 1960's), why isn't the government connecting it up and using it ???
Maybe also as Citizens, we need to start asking our Government the "WHY NOT ?" question.
As the Paging Industry, we should also be asking our Governments, from the Local, County, State and Federal levels how WE immediately can best accomplish this need ?
If we, the Paging Industry, just sit on our duffs and let the Government drag their feet, we will not only get what the Cellular lobbyists want for a Nationwide Alerting system, but we will also be the silent accomplices in helping any future devastating events hurt or kill people, when we could possibly have helped prevent it.
Interstate Wireless, inc.
From: Curtis Rock firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Simulcast Article
Date: February 2, 2007 1:51:42 PM CST
I very much enjoyed reading the simulcast article written by Dennis Cameron.
I received the other day a notice from USA Mobility that they are discontinuing transmission on three of their frequencies:
929.5375, 929.5625, and 929.7125
They are giving us about six weeks to change our customers over to 929.6625. I thought this might be newsworthy.
In addition, I wanted to remind you that WaveWare is also a supplier of telemetry solutions using paging. We recently completed delivery of a telemetry solution for the first responder market, with a county-wide system installed in Erie County, NY.
WaveWare Technologies, Inc.
"We Deliver Information at the Speed of Light"
Take our 5 Second Customer Survey at:
From: Rex Lee <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, February 02, 2007 9:29 AM
To: Brad Dye
Subject: RE: News Letter- Critical Messaging
I am really excited to see your news letter focused on “Critical Messaging Applications”. Nighthawk is actually deploying “Critical Messaging Applications” that are in use today in major cites like Denver and Seattle. I have attached a case study on what the City of Denver is doing with everything except the emergency alerting devices which are currently being installed. This is a ready made case stuffy for paging that I think the major carriers who are participating in these crucial meetings with the federal government need to be aware of. Although the city of Denver currently deploys our solutions on their own private network I think the major carriers should take notice of what can be done on their networks regarding Critical Messaging. I have listed below the applications Denver is currently deploying on paging:
1) Firehouse Automation/CAD Integrated
2) Civil Defense Sirens/Also Used For Inclement Weather Alerts (Tornado, etc.) / CAD Integrated
3) Traffic Signal Control/CAD Integrated/Used to Control Traffic Signals to Increase Response Time & Safety For The Public & First Responders
4) Public Notification/Remote Messaging Signs Deployed in Public Buildings Integrated With CAD to Disseminate Emergency Information to The Public (New Product 2007- All Inclusive Remote Signage)
5) Department of Highway Safety Signs CAD Integrated to Disseminate Traffic Conditions and Emergency Information to The Public (through DOT)
The “Key” component that ties these applications together is our ability to group devices through our firmware. Grouping through our firmware allows for total efficiency regarding mass notification to an unlimited number of devices on the same cap code from a single message. However, what is different about this technology from simply grouping by common cap code is that we can set up sub-set groups on the same common cap code so that individual devices can be alerted as well as grouping by geography and random grouping by priority. We can in essence alert an unlimited number of devices off of one message sent to one cap code while keeping the ability to alert groups or individual devices in tact unlike trying to group through a parent/chilled cap code hierarchy through a paging terminal which is very inefficient compare to how we group through our firmware. This is key and we need to be able to deliver this message to people in our government that would understand the implications of being able to alert millions of devices plus send telemetry commands with a single message nationwide. You can’t do this on cellular networks.
Keep in mind we have other applications deployed around the country such as automating Tsunami sirens on the West Coast plus we are working on a first warning system for lighting strikes with MPW paging.
Rex M. Lee,
VP Business Development/GM
Nighthawk Systems, Inc.
10715 Gulfdale, # 200
San Antonio, TX 78216
(210) 341-4811 Direct
(210) 341-2011 Fax
|UNTIL NEXT WEEK|
That's all for this week.
With best regards,
P.O. Box 13283
|Skype:||braddye|| WIRELESS |
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|THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK|
Henri Frédéric Amiel (September 27, 1821 - May 11, 1881) was a Swiss philosopher, poet and critic. Born in Geneva in 1821, he was descended from a Huguenot family driven to Switzerland by the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Losing his parents at an early age, Amiel travelled widely, became intimate with the intellectual leaders of Europe, and made a special study of German philosophy in Berlin. In 1849 he was appointed professor of aesthetics at the academy of Geneva, and in 1854 became professor of moral philosophy.
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