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Wireless News Aggregation

Friday — October 24, 2014 — Issue No. 629

Paging and Wireless Messaging Home Page image Newsletter Archive image Carrier Directory image Recommended Products and Services
Reference Papers Consulting Glossary of Terms Send an e-mail to Brad Dye

Dear Friends of Wireless Messaging,

This is the first issue with a wider format. From what I have been reading, the old format, that was 714 pixels wide, was obsolete since most people are now using wider-screen monitors on their computers. This format is 960 pixels wide—not much difference, but it should make it easier to read.

Please let me know what you think.

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Please note that Paging is reported-on in the BloostonLaw section: “FCC Issues Paging and Radiotelephone Compliance Reminder.”

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ReFLEX50 and ReFLEX25

Back in the days when Two-way Paging began, there were two different versions. The first one — ReFLEX50 — was used by SkyTel. It was jointly developed by SkyTel and Motorola. The second one — ReFLEX25 — was Motorola's attempt to “make it better.” I am not trying to start an argument about which one was better that's not my point

I think both names, ReFLEX25 and ReFLEX50 were unfortunate choices. They should have been called ReFLEX12.5 and ReFLEX10 which more correctly describe their basic differences. In other words, ReFLEX25 uses 12.5 kHz channel spacing and ReFLEX50 uses 10 kHz channel spacing. Following are some clarifications:

ReFLEX25 Forward channel options: ReFLEX25 Reverse channel options:
2-level FSK @ 1600 bps 4-level FSK @ 800 bps
2-level FSK @ 3200 bps 4-level FSK @ 1600 bps
4-level FSK @ 3200 bps 4-level FSK @ 6400 bps
4-level FSK @ 6400 bps 4-level FSK @ 9600 bps

Like FLEX, ReFLEX25 could operate using the same forward channel rates and two types of modulation. A difference between FLEX and ReFLEX, however, is that the maximum FLEX deviations are ±4800 Hz from the center frequency, while, the ReFLEX maximum deviations are ±2400 Hz. Because of these narrower deviations, three ReFLEX channels will fit within the NBPCS mask. FLEX and ReFLEX both use the same interleaved (31,21,2) BCH coding*.

The reverse channel maximum deviations are the same as those of the forward channel: ±2400 Hz from the center frequency. The error correction on the reverse channel uses a shortened (31,23) Reed-Solomon code*.

The reverse channels for ReFLEX50 are very similar to ReFLEX25 except that they operate on a fixed, high speed. This was controversial because it required multiple base-station receivers for each base-station transmitter, making the cost of deployment much higher.

* Bose-Chauhuri-Hochquenghem (BCH) and Reed-Solomon (RS) are mathematical error detection/correction codes used in wireless data communications.

We eventually moved past ReFLEX50 and ReFLEX25 starting with ReFLEX 2.7 which merged the two versions.


I am looking for a copy of the ReFLEX50 specification issued May/June 1994 (i.e., before middle of June 1994). Releases after June 1994 aren't what I need — I already have one of them.

If you have a copy that you are willing to share, I would very grateful. (click here)

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Wireless Messaging News
  • Emergency Radio Communications
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  • Critical Messaging
  • Telemetry
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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.

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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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Back To Paging


Still The Most Reliable Protocol For Wireless Messaging!

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If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter just fill in the blanks in the form above, and then click on the “Subscribe” bar.

free There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology.

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Can You Help The Newsletter?

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You can help support the Wireless Messaging News by clicking on the PayPal Donate button above. It is not necessary to be a member of PayPal to use this service.

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Newspapers generally cost 75¢ $1.50 a copy and they hardly ever mention paging or wireless messaging, unless in a negative way. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially?

A donation of $50.00 would certainly help cover a one-year period. If you are wiling and able, please click on the PayPal Donate button above.

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If you are reading this, your potential customers are reading it as well.

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American Messaging

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American Messaging

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Early Warning of Population with e*Warn

e*Message Marks Ten Years’ Partnership with Federal Office of Civil Defense — Next Steps Agreed

Berlin, October, 2014. Ralph Tiesler, vice-president of the German Federal Office of Civil Defense and Disaster Assistance, visited e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland in Berlin in late September.

Ralph Tiesler, Vice President of the German Federal Office of Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance, and e*Message CEO Dr. Dietmar Gollnick.

Tiesler saluted his agency’s ten-year cooperation with e*Message in the field of early warning of population. e*Message is the only mobile wireless network operator to transmit official warnings from the federal agency to professional users. The reason has to do with an important property of the e*Message network: unlike mobile phone networks, the e*Message network transmits warning information to all the addressed users simultaneously. The size of the group addressed has no effect on message latency: all users addressed receive each message practically instantly, no matter whether there are ten thousand or ten million of them.

In the past year, the German civil defense agency put the fourth development phase of its satellite-based modular emergency warning system MoWaS into operation. Building on this system, new techniques offered by various providers, alongside the warning media already integrated, will be used to bridge the “last mile” to the civil population and other message recipients. Tiesler stated that the MoWaS system continues to undergo intensive development. The agency is currently pursuing tests on the integration of e*Warn in MoWaS. The federal agency and e*Message have agreed to a timetable that includes an integrated demonstration as early as late November.

e*Message provides the e*Warn service for primarily stationary use as part of the MoWaS system. Recipients preparing to use the integrated solution by means of warning sirens and pagers primarily include government agencies, industrial plants, hospitals, child care facilities and schools. Warning sirens are stationary, wall-mounted user devices measuring 20 × 15 cm. They are battery-powered in case of power outages and feature a high degree of data security and locally stored, menu-driven user guidance. At e*Message, Tiesler examined the chip that implements the warning function, which has been produced in a beta version and could be used in future to provide MoWaS information as an added function in smoke alarms. Mr. Tiesler said, “It is especially important to us that information from the state warning system is transmitted by a variety of redundant media to the citizen, or to businesses and institutions. e*Warn makes a particularly important contribution to that objective.”

High reliability and user acceptance are key qualities for good warning systems. e*Message works with a number of national and international research institutions towards these goals.

About e*Message:
e*Message Wireless Information Services GmbH (e*Message Europe) is the operator of Europe’s largest emergency radio network. As one of four mobile wireless network operators in the German market, e*Message maintains a satellite-based wireless network, independent of public networks, with some 800 base stations throughout Germany. e*Message provides specialized messaging services, focusing on security, mobile organizational systems and integrated solutions. e*Message services are used with digital receivers to notify, warn and alert individuals and professional groups — doctors, service technicians, government agencies, firefighters or snowplow services for example — quickly, precisely, and reliably. Founded in December 1999, e*Message took over the paging operations of Deutsche Telekom and France Télécom in January of 2000, and has continuously developed both infrastructure and applications. The group’s head offices are in Berlin and Paris.

Business contact:
Anke Lüders-Gollnick
e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland GmbH
Schönhauser Allee 10-11
10119 Berlin
Phone: +49-30-4171 1223
Fax: +49-30-4171 1933

Press contact:
Christof Kaplanek
Hoschke & Consorten Public Relations GmbH
Phone: +49-40-3690 5038

Source:e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland GmbH


State-of-the-art paging network infrastructure, fully supported at an affordable price – and it integrates with your other gear, include most makes of transmitters

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Infostream is a world leading supplier of paging and messaging infrastructure, specialized paging receivers and consultancy services. The company was founded in 1993 and has engineered and supplied equipment for some of the largest public safety networks and private paging customers around the world.

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Our systems not only notify your personnel quickly and reliably, but also provide actionable feedback to fine-tune your procedures, reduce unnecessary alarms, and improve patient outcomes.



Britz Transformer Station Goes on Line in Neukölln, Berlin — e*Nergy M2M Solution Performs Key Energy Management Function

e*Message Provides Secure Control Signal Transmission in Berlin’s Power Grid

Berlin, 3rd Quarter, 2014. Berlin’s electric utility Stromnetz Berlin GmbH switched the new Britz transformer station, in the borough of Neukölln, on line today. The new station immediately improves the quality of electrical power supply for a first group of the approximately 26,000 household and business customers in the Britz district. The new facility marks the first use of a next-generation load management technology produced through the cooperation of Bosch Software Innovations GmbH and e*Message W.I.S. Deutschland GmbH. The Berlin-based mobile wireless network operator e*Message supplies a key function in the energy management system, the secure transmission of control signals through its M2M service e*Nergy.

To ensure reliable power supply, energy utilities today are called upon to remotely control decentralized energy loads and generators. The Britz transformer station is the first to meet this challenge using the e*Nergy radio control system. A machine-to-machine (M2M) system offered by the Berlin mobile wireless network operator e*Message, e*Nergy is based on Europe’s largest emergency radio network: e*Message operates a satellite-supported digital radio network, independent of public telecommunication networks, with around 800 base stations throughout Germany. This radio network is used for fast mobile alerting of service, emergency and rescue personnel throughout Germany.

“e*Nergy delivers reliable, efficient remote control of all kinds of power consuming and generating installations in modern utility plants like the Britz transformer station,” said Dr. Dietmar Gollnick, CEO of e*Message. “In developing this service, we worked in close cooperation with Stromnetz Berlin to implement all security specifications and ensure the intelligent control of M2M infrastructures at all times.” The first step has been taken towards load-dependent control of storage heaters, non-public lighting, and heat pumps over e*Nergy in the area served by the Britz transformer station.

e*Nergy Power Controller (switch)

The IT platform supplied by e*Message’s project partners Bosch Software Innovations GmbH and Stromnetz Berlin GmbH uses e*Nergy to control power aggregates, switching them on and off or regulating individual elements gradually. The new technology is more compact and significantly more efficient than comparable methods. e*Nergy is a pioneer in the field of radio control technology, and boasts a powerful communications infrastructure with coverage to serve every household in Berlin. e*Message operates up to 40 base stations in Berlin and Brandenburg alone, at sites with maximum exposure, including broadcasting towers and optimally suited buildings. This ensures uniform, high-quality wireless coverage. Because the transformer station is controlled from the utility’s central grid control center, electric power can be immediately rerouted in emergencies to restore service. The new transformer station on Buckower Dam replaces the old Britz transformer station built in the 1960s on the same site.

About e*Message:
e*Message Wireless Information Services GmbH (e*Message Europe) is the operator of Europe’s largest emergency radio network. As one of four mobile wireless network operators in the German market, e*Message maintains a satellite-based wireless network, independent of public networks, with some 800 base stations throughout Germany. e*Message provides specialized messaging services, focusing on security, mobile organizational systems and integrated solutions. e*Message services are used with digital receivers to notify, warn and alert individuals and professional groups — doctors, service technicians, government agencies, firefighters or snowplow services for example — quickly, precisely, and reliably. Founded in December 1999, e*Message took over the paging operations of Deutsche Telekom and France Télécom in January of 2000, and has continuously developed both infrastructure and applications. The group’s head offices are in Berlin and Paris.

Business contact:
Anke Lüders-Gollnick
e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland GmbH
Schönhauser Allee 10-11
10119 Berlin
Phone: +49-30-4171 1223
Fax: +49-30-4171 1933

Press contact:
Christof Kaplanek
Hoschke & Consorten Public Relations GmbH
Phone: +49-40-3690 5038

Head of economics of the highest populated Berlin District, and CEO of Vattenfall Stromnetz Berlin, Germany—opening new Britz transformer station.

Source:e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland GmbH


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

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7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
Web Site:
Mobile phone:847-494-0000
Skype ID:pcleavitt

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STI Engineering's RFI-148 250 high performance paging transmitter features true DDS frequency generation that enables precise control and flexibility for a wide range of data transmission applications.

The transmitter is particularly suitable for large simulcast POCSAG and FLEX paging networks and can be used as drop-in replacement of older and obsolete transmitters. The unit has a proven track record in large scale critical messaging systems.

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Emergency pager system 'should be encrypted'

774 ABC Melbourne Australia
By Simon Leo Brown
Posted Wed at 8:07pm Wed 22 Oct 2014, 8:07pm

PHOTO: Pager messages sent over the EAS can include personal information about ambulance patients. (Supplied: Ian Gilchrist. Digital editing: Simon Leo Brown)

Victoria's emergency services pager network should be encrypted, according to a former Country Fire Authority (CFA) volunteer and radio technician.

The Emergency Services Telecommunication Authority (ESTA) uses the network to dispatch country fire brigades, rural ambulances and SES volunteers.

Pager messages sent over the Emergency Alerting System (EAS) can include personal and sensitive information about ambulance patients.

Ian Gilchrist, who worked for the navy as a radio technician, built a system which decodes and archives EAS messages but decommissioned it due to legal concerns.

Labor has promised to upgrade the regional police radio network if it wins the Victorian election, but neither party has committed to encrypting the EAS.

An anonymous letter sent to 774 ABC Melbourne's Jon Faine raised concerns over the security of the system.

"The ESTA pager network generates 1,000,000 pages a year and is not encrypted, thus allowing access to all this information easily by using a simple internet search," the letter read.

"Information is available [on] how to use simple free software, a $300 scanner and a computer that pulls the information onto a screen."

However Mr Gilchrist said setting up a secure system was not as simple as it sounds.

"Certainly it's possible, it's not easy," he said.

He also said the system described by the letter "would work well, until you needed it".

"Then it becomes all garbled."

He said some CFA brigades do use such a system to decode EAS messages, but his system was far more reliable.

Technical challenge leads to legal problems

Mr Gilchrist built his system in 2010, while a volunteer for the CFA in Gisborne.

"In the CFA you would become one of the boys when you get a pager," he said.

"I looked at the pager, and I said 'I bet you I can decode these'."

Decoding pager messages

The ESTA pager system uses a protocol called POCSAG* to transmit messages over analogue radio.

Pager messages transmitted on radio sound a lot like the noises made by dial-up modems.

Pagers listen to all messages on a particular radio band, much like tuning your radio to a station.

Each pager is assigned a code, called a CAPCODE**.

The pager will only display those messages which contain its CAPCODE.

To give a simplified example, a message might start with the code "1234". A pager assigned to this code will display this message, but not messages starting with "1233" or "1235".

However, computer systems can be set up to display all messages sent on the radio band it is listening on, not just those sent to a particular CAPCODE.

The CFA, SES and RAV all use the same radio band.

*Post Office Code Standardisation Advisory Group
** Channel Access Protocol code

He bought "the guts of a pager" and wrote his own software to decode and translate its output.

He then built a website to display the information, but only allowed access to members of the CFA, RAV (Rural Ambulance Victoria) or SES.

Mr Gilchrist said he "spent literally hundreds of hours" building the system, which provided many advantages to emergency volunteers.

For example, pagers for each CFA brigade only display messages meant for that brigade.

However often brigades are called upon to help neighboring brigades with large fires, so it is advantageous to receive messages meant for those brigades as well.

After running the system for a few years he received an email from a man in Queensland, warning him of potential legal problems.

"He said... just be aware I had the same kind of system and the Federal Police came after me."

Mr Gilchrist contacted his local police, the Justice Department, the Federal Police and the Australian Communications and Media Authority to try and establish what the law was, but had little success.

President of Liberty Victoria Jane Dixon said making emergency services messages available to a third person could contravene state and federal laws.

"It could be in breach of the Victorian Health Records act, it might also be in breach of the Commonwealth Privacy Act," she said.

While Mr Gilchrist eventually turned off his system, he was not sure that he ever would have run into serious legal trouble.

"If I were to share this information with bona fide CFA members, I can't see how any court of law would incriminate me," he said.

Ambulance Victoria chief executive Greg Sassella said individuals had been scanning the emergency services' analogue radio and pager networks "for decades".

He said Ambulance Victoria insist that a minimum of information be sent over these networks.

"We've got a very strict policy in place and that policy has been written in conjunction with our lawyers," he told Jon Faine.

"The balancing act that we have to strike as an ambulance service is ... we have to provide an amount of information sufficient for the crews to be able to prepare themselves and know even where to attend and how to get to the patient."

Encryption important, but expensive

While enjoying the technical challenge of decoding the EAS, Mr Gilchrist believes the messages should be encrypted, especially those sent to ambulance officers.

However it is not the only example of sensitive data being available to the public.

"I believe there's lots of information available to the public that should be encrypted," he said.

He said police in rural areas do license checks over the analogue radio network, which can be listened to by anyone with a police scanner and could be used for identity theft.

Labor has promised $10 million to upgrade the regional police radio network to an encrypted digital network, however the Government said the cost would be more than five times that.

Either way, securing the paging network would likely cost even more due to the number of receivers involved.

"At the end of the day it comes down to money," Mr Gilchrist said.

"It's going to cost them millions of dollars to get a new pager system.

"Do I think those millions of dollars should be spent on something else? Probably."

Source: 774 ABC Melbourne (Australia)

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It's still here — the tried and true Motorola Alphamate 250. Now owned, supported, and available from Leavitt Communications. Call us for new or reconditioned units, parts, manuals, and repairs.

We also offer refurbished Alphamate 250's, Alphamate IIs, the original Alphamate and new and refurbished pagers, pager repairs, pager parts and accessories. We are FULL SERVICE in Paging!

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

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Phil Leavitt

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7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

Pagers shout data center creds, pop star airport arrivals

Encryption: IBM and Australian spooks have heard of it, but aren't using it

By Darren Pauli, 22 Oct 2014
The Register UK

Anyone wanting to know the time world leaders arrive in Australia for the coming G20 summit need only listen to broadcasts from Aussie airports, researcher Ed Farrell has claimed at the Ruxcon conference.

News of VIP airport arrivals are just one of the interesting pieces of information the Sydney security consultant monitored pager signals for about five months this year collecting more than 1.1 million broadcasts.

Within that cache, he found the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) and IBM broadcasting their data centre change request identities (essentially access credentials), hospitals issuing sensitive medical records including names and addresses, and one major unnamed airport which announced the names of incoming VIPs.

"In the first five minutes of listening I was capturing things that should not have been transmitted - things like confidential patient files, a service call-out for an automatic teller machine, and some emergency services stuff," said Farrell, of Sydney's Hacklab.

"The security team out of [an] airport were coordinating movements for some of the G20 delegates and were broadcasting their movements in cleartext.

"There were a few from DSTO out at Morebank and IBM had sent personnel change requests too."

He added that airports have also broadcast the arrival of pop stars including Katy Perry in March.

Captured pager messages were broadcast on a backpack during Ruxcon. Darren Pauli. ©The Register

Farrell's pager eavesdropping, confined to listening to the POCSAG protocol, was not new but did illustrate the risks that the antiquated technology presented in the modern day.

He has captured and used broadcasted change request data to enter data centres as part of professional social engineering penetration tests in what also served as a demonstration of what audacious criminals could do to gain access to the facilities.

It cost Farrell no more than AU$9 to purchase a tuner capable of capturing the information which together with the wealth of pager-hacking information available online made the ancient tech an easy vector of attack.

Organisations did not need to throw out the humble pager, nor follow the route of encryption, but rather simply ensure messages were benign.

"The reality is that if messages are generic enough so that they are not disclosing sensitive information then there was little risk."

He said between 20 and 30 percent of messages were either non-nonsensical or seemingly benign machine-to-machine transmissions — however he was able to correlate a number of the latter pages to determine it was issued by the Department of Defence, but not its contents.

Source: The Register UK

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Consulting Alliance

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Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, Vic Jackson, and Ira Wiesenfeld are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects.

Click here left arrow for a summary of their qualifications and experience. Each one has unique abilities. We would be happy to help you with a project, and maybe save you some time and money.

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Consulting Alliance

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Selected portions 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 with the firm's permission.

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BloostonLaw Telecom UpdateVol. 17, No. 42October 22, 2014

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Comment Sought on Broadband Speed, Latency Testing for High-Cost Support Recipients

On October 16, 2014, the FCC issued a Public Notice seeking further comment on the methodology to be used to measure compliance by high-cost support recipients with their broadband speed and latency performance obligations regarding service to fixed locations. Comments will be due 30 days after the Public Notice appears in the Federal Register.

Regarding broadband speed measurement, the FCC proposed a format similar to the testing process it adopted for latency testing by price cap carriers in 2013. Specifically, broadband speed measurements must be made once per hour during the peak 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM period for four consecutive weeks at a minimum of 50 randomly-selected customer locations within the recipient’s supported service area in a state. At least 95 percent of the observations are required to be at or above the required minimum speed. The FCC also asks whether broadband speed testing should be performed by internal network management system tool, and/or by external measurement tools (such as Speedtest/Ookla or Network Diagnostic Tests by M-Labs). It also lists the Measuring Broadband America (MBA) program as an option.

By way of background, in October 2013, the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau established a round-trip latency standard of 100 milliseconds (ms) or less during the peak period (7:00 PM to 11:00 PM) between the customer premises and the nearest designated Internet core peering interconnection point (IXP) for price cap carriers that accept CAF Phase II model-based support. It set up a testing process that entailed measurements for at least two consecutive weeks during peak hours for at least 50 randomly-selected customer locations within a recipient’s service area in each state. Such measurements could be performed via existing network management systems, ping tests, other commonly available network measurement tools, or participation in the Measuring Broadband America (MBA) program.

The MBA program currently tests the speed and latency of the wireline services of 15 large broadband providers via white-box devices deployed at individual customer locations. The FCC asks whether the MBA program could accommodate significant numbers of additional large and small broadband service providers, and whether it would be feasible and cost-effective for rate of return (RoR) carriers and other small providers to pay the white-box and administrative costs of MBA program participation.

Regarding latency measurement, the FCC asserts that the latency testing options adopted for price cap carriers “should provide at least one readily achievable method suitable for small, rural carriers.” Clients will recall that the FCC proposed to extend its latency requirement to RoR carriers and to winners of reverse auctions in price cap areas in its June Omnibus USF Order. In the October 16 Public Notice, the FCC notes that rural carriers have expressed concern that they have no control over latency measurements that include middle mile facilities operated by unrelated carriers, but states that it has rejected similar arguments by price cap carriers because: (a) testing only part of a network will not measure the quality of service received by end users; and (b) price cap carriers have a number of options to influence the quality of service they receive from transit and peering providers. The FCC asked whether the same reasoning is applicable to RoR carriers. RoR clients should let us know of instances where RBOCs and other large carriers have been somewhat less than cooperative in responding to requests for improved middle mile and similar facilities.

Thus far, the Public Notice appears to be yet one more instance of the FCC imposing increased compliance costs upon RoR carriers that are already struggling to upgrade their broadband facilities and services in the face of budgeted high-cost support at 2011 levels and intercarrier compensation decreasing at 5 percent per year. Repeated assertions that increased reporting and testing costs decrease the net resources available for broadband deployment seem to be ignored.

However, it is worth noting that the Public Notice does contain an alternative FCC-Developed Testing Program whereby USAC would contract and pay for some or all of the equipment and services necessary to conduct broadband speed and latency testing. The FCC estimates that such program would cost $4.2 million during its first year and $5.9 million per year thereafter, and that USAC could pick up at least $1.3 million per year of the costs.

Finally, the FCC indicated that broadband speed and/or latency audits could be triggered by failures to file the required annual certifications and/or by failures of the test measurements to meet the minimum standards. It also asked whether complaints by customers and/or public watchdog organizations should trigger audits.

FCC Issues Paging and Radiotelephone Compliance Reminder; Asks for Comment on Technical Changes

The FCC has issued a Public Notice, reminding Part 22 licensees of several rules that the FCC must feel are not always being followed; and the Commission’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau is seeking comments on any technical or operational flexibility that the Commission may provide that might result in more intensive use of the band. Comments are due December 17, 2014 and reply comments are due January 19, 2015. Clients trying to make more effective use of their Part 22 channels for dispatch, data and other services should take this opportunity to advocate rule changes that would help this cause. In the meantime, it is advisable that Part 22 licensees check to ensure their compliance with the following rules that the FCC is focused on, since a warning shot such as the Public Notice is likely to be setting the stage for enforcement efforts.

Licensees authorized in the Part 22 Paging and Radiotelephone Service generally have the authority to operate various voice and data services, and they must comply with all applicable Part 20 and 22 rules. While the small number of channels allocated under Part 22 were originally intended for paging and the now defunct IMTS service, licensees have been looking to make more creative use of this spectrum now that the demand for traditional paging service is at an all-time low. Several companies are using these frequencies for trunking, sometimes pursuant to an FCC waiver, to fill the void left by Nextel.

The FCC is reminding licensees to obey are the following Part 22 Rules unless they have been granted a waiver by the FCC:

  • Channel bandwidth . Unless otherwise indicated, all channels have a bandwidth of 20 kHz and are designated by their center frequencies in megahertz. The paging channel spacing may be more than 20 kHz, but the authorized channel bandwidth as specified by the rules is 20 kHz (10 kHz to each side of the center frequency).
  • Emission limitations . Under Part 22, the power of any emission outside of the authorized operating frequency ranges must be attenuated below the transmitting power by at least 43 + 10 log (P) dB. Alternative out of band emission limits may be established at specified frequencies (band edges) in specified geographical areas pursuant to a private contractual arrangement among all affected licensees and applicants, and must be disclosed to the FCC, upon request.
  • Effective radiated power limits . The effective radiated power (ERP) of transmitters operating on paging channels must not exceed the limits in section 22.535.
  • Permissible operations . The channel assignments listed in section 22.531 are allocated for one-way paging operations. Paired channels listed in section 22.561 are for one-way or two-way mobile operations.
  • Permissible communications paths . Mobile stations may communicate only with and through base stations. Base stations may communicate only with mobile stations and receivers on land or surface vessels.
  • Equipment authorization . All the equipment operated in Part 22 paging must have been certified by the Commission under applicable Part 22 paging rules.
  • Protection of existing service. Pursuant to section 22.537 or section 22.567, all facilities authorized to operate pursuant to a paging geographic area authorization (i.e., an auction license) must provide co-channel interference protection to all authorized site-based co-channel facilities of incumbent licensees within the paging geographic area.
  • Equipment authorization. All the equipment operated in Part 22 paging must have been certified by the Commission under applicable Part 22 paging rules.
  • Protection of existing service. Pursuant to section 22.537 or section 22.567, all facilities authorized to operate pursuant to a paging geographic area authorization (i.e., an auction license) must provide co-channel interference protection to all authorized site-based co-channel facilities of incumbent licensees within the paging geographic area.
  • Canadian border: Licensees planning to operate transmitters north of Line A are first required to obtain Canadian clearance by filing an application for modification of their license(s), including the technical parameters of the planned site, in order for the Bureau to coordinate planned operations with Industry Canada.

The Wireless Bureau recognizes that additional technical and operational flexibility may promote more intensive use of the licenses, and therefore seeks comment on whether it is appropriate to update the Paging and Radiotelephone Service rules to provide flexibility in the types of uses and technologies that can operate on these channels (such as narrowband equipment, or using offset frequencies between the traditional channels).

For example, the FCC recently modified its Part 90 Private Radio rules to permit the use of Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA) equipment in certain portions of two bands – the 450-470 MHz portion of the UHF band (421-512 MHz), and Business/Industrial Land Transportation 800 MHz band channels (809-824/854-869 MHz). However, use of TETRA equipment on Part 22 frequencies may violate channel bandwidth and emission limitations rules. The Bureau asks whether the Part 22 rules should be updated to permit technologies like TETRA.

As a further example, licensees planning to deploy transmitters north of Line A are required to first obtain Canadian clearance. Some licensees, who are unable to get Canadian clearance on the center frequency, may wish to use offset frequencies in order to get Canadian approval. Use of frequency offsets may violate channel bandwidth and emission limitation rules. The Bureau asks whether flexibility in channel bandwidths would be useful in these instances and under what conditions.

Interested clients that wish to file comments or participate in group comments should contact us promptly.

VoIP Phone Systems Can be Subject to Hacking, Leaving Businesses with Huge Losses

News outlets are reporting that over the past year, communications fraud involving VoIP systems has resulted in almost $4.75 billion dollars in fraudulent phone calls to premium-rate telephone numbers in foreign countries such as Somalia, Gambia and the Maldives. The scams are reportedly perpetrated by hackers without the knowledge of the business owner by breaking into the Internet connected phone network over a weekend or holiday when the businesses are typically closed and routing hundreds of calls to premium-rate telephone numbers that have been leased by criminal organizations. Because hackers are using high speed computers, they are able to make hundreds of calls at the same time, which increase the charges to the unwary business exponentially. In some cases, small businesses have been saddled with fraudulent phone charges as high as $200,000.

As a result of this fraudulent activity, there have been calls from Congress for the FCC and law enforcement to take action against fraudsters, but to date, there apparently has not been much movement or interest.

If you are using a VoIP system for your telephone system, it is critical that you have protections in place to prevent hackers from gaining access to your system over the Internet. Protections can include disabling any call-forwarding features, and requiring strong passwords for voice mail systems and for placing international calls. Essentially, experts are saying that VoIP phone systems should be treated like any other computer device that is connected to the Internet.

Our clients providing VoIP-based services will also want to work with liability counsel about communicating this risk, and potential remedies, to their customers.

Part 90 Class B Signal Booster Registration Due Nov. 1; FCC Modifies Technical Rules

The FCC has announced that Part 90 licensees and signal booster operators that operate or intend to operate Part 90 Class B private land mobile (non-consumer) signal boosters will be required to register existing signal boosters with the Commission by November 1, 2014. Part 90 Class B signal boosters are devices that are designed to increase signal penetration for licensed Part 90 radio facilities.

Any new Class B signal boosters installed on or after November 1, 2014 must be registered before the device can be operated. Registration will be made electronically and paper filings will not be accepted.

The use of a Part 90 Class B signal booster after November 1, 2014 could result in the imposition of substantial monetary forfeitures for unauthorized operation of a transmitter.

If you have a signal booster that requires registration, please contact our office for assistance.

In a related matter, the FCC recently released its Order on Reconsideration and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in which it modified the rules that affect the manufacturing and distribution of service provider signal boosters (which are typically used for cellular systems) and for consumer signal boosters. The most relevant change that could affect our clients is the labeling restriction for consumer signal boosters. This restriction requires that the sentence “[t]his device may ONLY be operated in a fixed location for in-building use” be listed in four locations: (1) in any on-line listing, in point-of-sale marketing materials; (2) in any user/owner’s manual or installation instructions; (3) on the packaging; and (4) on a label affixed to the booster itself. Additionally, the FCC has added technical requirements for mobile provider-specific Consumer Signal Boosters, which include: stronger noise limits, stronger gain limits if the device is directly connected or using direct contact coupling; and maximum gain limitations for signal boosters of 58 dB (for frequencies below 1 GHz) and 65 dB (for frequencies above 1 GHz) if an inside antenna is used and the booster has both an automatic gain adjustment based on isolation measurements between the booster donor and server antenna with automatic feedback cancellation. Finally, the Commission has indicated that it will apply the “antenna kitting rule” to all Provider-Specific Consumer Signal Boosters so that all boosters are sold together with antennas, cables, and/or coupling devices that meet the FCC’s requirements for use with signal booster equipment.

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Law & Regulation

FBI Requests CALEA Revisions To Require Surveillance “Backdoor” For Cellphones

FBI Director James Comey has asked Congress to update the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (“CALEA”) to require smart phone developers to build “backdoors” for law enforcement surveillance into all devices. This appears to be a response to the customer data encryption standards recently adopted by Apple and Google.
As clients remember, CALEA was a major mid-1990s initiative to enable law enforcement to access wireline and wireless voice networks for surveillance purposes. Whereas law enforcement interest in CALEA has appeared to wane during the last decade, the FBI seems to be exploring a potential revival and expansion of CALEA in order to improve its surveillance access to smart phones and other new technologies.

Opponents are raising privacy concerns, as well as fears that the presence of surveillance “backdoors” would hurt the sales of smart phones in the United States as well as in international markets.
With the current Congress terminating at the end of 2014, no specific CALEA amendments will be introduced until the next Congress organizes itself in January 2015. Any such CALEA modifications will be controversial. Their scope and potential enactment, plus the speed of their consideration, will depend much upon the composition of the next Congress as well as future domestic and international events.

FCC Initiates Inquiry on Fifth Generation (5G) Mobile Services

The FCC last week adopted a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) to examine the potential use of spectrum bands above 24 GHz (so-called “millimeter wave” or “mmW” spectrum) for extremely high-speed Fifth Generation (5G) mobile services. Initial comments on the item ( FCC 14-154 ) are due December 16, 2014 with reply comments due by January 15, 2105.

“Today’s NOI begins our formal inquiry into this technology – asking many detailed questions about how it works, and how it is different from current technology,” said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler in a prepared statement. “The NOI also is designed to develop a record about how these technologies fit into our existing regulatory structures, including how they can be authorized, to make sure we are facilitating and not unduly burdening their further development.”

By way of background, most mobile networks today use spectrum bands below 3 GHz primarily due to the favorable propagation characteristics of that spectrum and suitability of these lower frequency spectrum bands to current technology. For example, Cellular Radiotelephone Service uses the 845-890 MHz bands, Personal Communications Service and Advanced Wireless Services utilize spectrum in the 1.7-2.1 GHz range, and the Broadband Radio Service utilizes spectrum in the 2.5 GHz range. However, as technology has developed, some equipment manufacturers are now developing ways to provide non-line-of-sight services in spectrum bands previously thought to be limited to fixed point-to-point or point-to-multipoint use (such as 24 GHz, LMDS, 39 GHz and the 79/80 GHz bands).

These higher frequency bands are most likely to be used in areas where traffic demands exceed available capacity, such as urban areas, event venues, and other locations experiencing congestion due to high density use. Among other research, field trials of mmW mobile service are being conducted at New York University and the University of Texas with funding from the U.S. Army and Samsung. Those trials found that 39 GHz mobile base stations can sustain 100 percent coverage in cells with a 200-meter radius in high-density urban areas.

As of yet, there no consensus definition of 5G, but researchers believe it should accommodate an eventual 1000-fold increase in traffic demand, supporting high-bandwidth content with speeds in excess of 10 gigabits per second (Gb/s); end-to-end transmission delays (latency) of less than one-thousandth of a second; and, in the same networks, sporadic, low-data-rate transmissions among an “Internet of things.” Standards bodies and industry groups are working to complete the preparation of 5G technical standards in the 2016-2018 timeframe, with initial deployment of services using these technologies expected around 2020.

The purposes of the FCC’s proceeding include learning about the development status of enabling technologies that are essential to build mobile broadband networks in frequencies above 24 GHz, identifying mmW bands that could be suitable for the provision of so-called 5G mobile services, and exploring the technical challenges that deployment of a new generation of mobile technology will present. We will follow this proceeding with interest and keep our clients apprised of developments and opportunities as they arise.

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FCC Releases Internet Access Services Report; Local Telephone Competition Report

On October 16 the FCC released its Internet Access Services Report and its Local Telephone Competition Report. These reports summarize information about Internet access and telephone services in the United States as December 31, 2013, respectively, as collected by FCC Form 477.

According to a press release on the two reports, highlights include:

  • The number of connections with downstream speeds of at least 10 Mbps increased by 104% over December 2012, from 60 million to 122 million connections, including 64 million fixed connections and 58 million mobile connections.
  • The number of mobile subscriptions with speeds over 200 kbps in at least one direction grew from 169 million to 197 million – up 17% from December 2012.
  • In voice services, there were 85 million end-user switched access lines in service, 48 million interconnected VoIP subscriptions, and 311 million mobile voice subscriptions, or 444 million retail local telephone service connections in total as of December 31, 2013.
  • Over the three years between December 2010 and December 2013, interconnected VoIP subscriptions increased at a compound growth rate of 15%, mobile voice subscriptions increased at a compound annual growth rate of 3%, and retail switched access lines declined at 10% a year.

A copy of the full Internet Access Services Report can be found here , and a copy of the full Local Telephone Competition Report can be found here .

Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau Releases Report on 911 Outages

At its October 17 Open Meeting, the FCC considered a Report and Recommendations item prepared by the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (Bureau) regarding a series of 911 outages that took place on April 9.

Specifically, the report addresses an outage caused by a software coding error in a 911 call-routing facility in Englewood, Colorado, which caused the facility to stop directing emergency calls to eighty-one 911 call centers (Public Safety Answering Points or PSAPs) in seven states: California, Florida, Minnesota, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Washington. The outage reportedly resulted in a loss of 911 service for more than 11 million people for up to six hours. Over 6,600 calls to 911 never reached a PSAP, though fortunately no one died in the incident.

Recommendations include:

  • Develop and Implement NG911 Transition Best Practices : The transition to NG911 introduces new technologies, service arrangements and business relationships into the 911 ecosystem, adding complexity that heightens the risk of a widespread outage with the potential to affect multiple states. The Bureau’s inquiry has shed light on a number of measures that providers can take to improve service reliability during this transition. The Bureau recommends that the Commission charge CSRIC with developing and refining a comprehensive set of best practices in this area.
  • Further FCC Proceedings on 911 Reliability : The Commission should conduct further proceedings as necessary to ensure that reliability of 911 service in the United States continues to promote the safety of life and property by maintaining pace with evolving technologies and challenges, and that both incumbent 911 service providers and new entrants remain fully accountable to the public they serve.
  • Intergovernmental and Stakeholder Information Sharing : The transition to NG911 creates a need for closer coordination of evolving practices and expectations regarding 911 among all governmental and commercial entities, as well as a broad-based understanding among all stakeholders regarding the status of deployment of NG911 from all stakeholders involved.
  • Situational Awareness : All parties involved in 911 end-to-end call completion, as well as appropriate public safety authorities, need to take steps to improve situational awareness during an outage.
    Exercise of Enforcement Powers : The Commission should use enforcement action as necessary to safeguard reliable end-to-end 911 service. 911 service providers must remain vigilant and ensure compliance with the Commission’s 911 requirements, including outage reporting requirements, particularly as they transition to NG911 networks.
  • Contractual Relationship Monitoring : Primary 911 service providers should monitor their contractual relationships to establish clear operational roles and responsibilities for situational awareness and information sharing, and exercise operational oversight with respect to their subcontractors and implement the appropriate mechanisms to retain meaningful controls.

A full copy of the report can be found here .

Calendar At-a-Glance black line

Oct. 1 – FCC Form 477 due (Local Competition and Broadband Reporting) .*
Oct. 14 – Deadline for applications for rural broadband experiments .*
Oct. 27 – Comment deadline for FirstNet RFI.
Oct. 27 – Comments are due on the Healthcare Connect Fund Public Notice.

Nov. 1 – Deadline for Part 90 Licensees and Signal Boosters to register existing signal boosters.
Nov. 3 – FCC Form 499-Q (Quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) is due.
Nov. 3 – Reply comments are due on IP Captioning proceeding.
Nov. 7 – Deadline for Rural Broadband Experiments Applications (6 p.m. EST).
Nov. 7 – Nominations and statements of interest for PSAP Architecture Task Force are due.
Nov. 10 – Auction 97 Mock Auction.
Nov. 10 – Responses to CAF Phase II Challenges are due.
Nov. 10 – Reply comments are due on the Healthcare Connect Fund Public Notice.
Nov. 10 – Comments on electronic delivery of license authorizations and ASR registrations are due.
Nov. 13 – Auction 97 begins.
Nov. 14 – Comments are due on USDA Notice on Changes to Guaranteed Loan Program Regulations.
Nov. 14 – Comments are due on Part 32 Accounting Rules NPRM.

Dec. 1 – Deadline to Increase Residential Rate Floor to $16.
Dec. 15 – Deadline for Special Access Data Collection.
Dec. 15 – Reply comments are due on Part 32 Accounting Rules NPRM.
Dec. 17 – Comments are due on Part 22 Technical Changes.

Jan. 19 – Reply comments on Part 22 Technical Changes are due.

* These deadlines have been suspended indefinitely. New deadlines have not been set at this time.

This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm. For additional information, please contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or .

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Critical Alert Systems President Receives the CMA 2014 Global Critical Communications Industry Award

Ted McNaught Recognized by Critical Messaging Association For Longstanding Commitment, Leadership And Innovation In The Critical Messaging Industry

Jacksonville, FL — October 20, 2014 — Critical Alert Systems, a leading provider of nurse call and connected care solutions for the Acute Care industry, today announced its President and COO, Ted McNaught, received the Critical Messaging Association’s 2014 Global Industry Recognition Award. The award recognizes industry leaders who have made meaningful impact on the critical messaging industry.

The Critical Messaging Association (CMA), headquartered in Wilmington, NC, is an industry association dedicated to advocacy and innovation in wireless delivery of time-sensitive, critical messages for the healthcare, first responder, emergency industries. The CMA selected McNaught from a list of international nominees.

Ted has been a driving force behind the transformation of Critical Alert into a high growth, healthcare communications company with leading edge technologies. He has driven and managed the operating initiatives to construct a scalable platform capable of delivering the highest levels of customer service and supporting significant growth in the U.S and international markets.

"This recognition for Ted is well deserved," said Ed Meyercord, CEO of Critical Alert Systems. "With strong leadership, infectious energy and innovative ideas, Ted has made significant contributions to the critical messaging landscape as he has in reshaping Critical Alert into a high growth healthcare technology company. We congratulate Ted for this recognition on a global stage and thank him for all he has accomplished at our company", said Meyercord.

McNaught is the founding President of the American Association of Paging Carriers (AAPC), which became the Critical Messaging Association (CMA) in 2010. He is the past President of CMA-A and has been instrumental in expanding CMA’s mission and membership as a global organization. He also is a member of the Enterprise Wireless Association Board of Directors.

About Critical Alert Systems
Critical Alert designs and delivers the most technologically advanced, easy-to-use nurse call solutions on the market. By using native middleware, our systems allow clinicians to enhance their workflows, lower costs, improve staff performance, and raise patient satisfaction. Our systems capture and store all events and patient interactions allowing hospitals to generate relevant and customizable reporting with real-time dashboards.

Karla McGowan

Source:Critical Alert Systems


Prism Paging


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  • VoIP telephone access — eliminate interconnect expense
  • Call from anywhere — Prism SIP Gateway allows calls from PSTN and PBX
  • All the Features for Paging, Voice-mail, Text-to-Pager, Wireless and DECT phones
  • Prism Inet, the new IP interface for TAP, TNPP, SNPP, SMTP — Industry standard message input
  • Direct Connect to NurseCall, Assisted Living, Aged Care, Remote Monitoring, Access Control Systems

Apple defeats GPNE's $94M patent-infringement claim

A San Jose jury rules against the nonpracticing entity, which had accused Apple of infringing its mobile device technology.

by Shara Tibken
@sharatibken 23 October 2014, 7:09 am AEDT

GPNE's suit included the iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPad 2, iPad 3 and iPad Mini.

Apple on Wednesday defeated GPNE in a patent-infringement trial, with a jury determining the electronics giant's devices didn't infringe mobile technology owned by the nonpracticing entity.

Apple, which called GPNE a patent troll, said in a statement that it was "pleased" by the verdict.

It also urged congressional leaders to work on patent reforms to prevent lawsuits by companies that don't actually make anything or use the patents they own. Such companies, typically called patent trolls, buy patents and then make money by suing companies around the globe. GPNE has threatened suits against hundreds of companies, including small businesses.

GPNE sued Apple in 2011 over two patents related to technology for communicating across cellular networks. GPNE earlier this month told a jury that Apple should pay it $94 million for selling iPhones and iPads that infringe its patents. The company's suit included the iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPad 2, iPad 3 and iPad Mini.

Apple countered by saying that the technology covered pagers, which it doesn't sell. A San Jose, Calif., jury ultimately sided with Apple.

Apple argued during the trial against GPNE that the patents covered pagers, not smartphones and tablets.

GPNE CEO Edwin Wong referred CNET to his company's attorneys. Kalpana Srinivasan, a partner with law firm Susman Godfrey LLP, said in a statement that "it was a hard-fought trial with a tough claim construction in a case in which our firm was hired a few months ago. We strongly believe the judge will address the underlying legal issues in post-verdict motions."

Here's Apple's full statement:

"We are pleased the jury in California saw through GPNE's attempt to extort money from Apple for 20 year old pager patents that have expired, wasting time for everyone involved. GPNE is a patent troll with no active business other than patent litigation. They have sent more than 300 demand letters in the past year to everyone from truckers and farmers to roofers and dairies threatening costly legal entanglements if these small businesses didn't pay them off — this isn't right. Apple invents products that revolutionize industries, and relies upon the U.S. patent system to protect our innovation. We urge congressional leaders to continue focusing on reform in this important area of patent law."

Update, 1:35 p.m. PT : With additional background information.
Update, 2:55 p.m. PT : With comment from GPNE.

Source: c|net

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From:Blake Sorensen
Subject: Letter to the editor
Date:October 23, 2014
To:Brad Dye

Good Afternoon,

We recently acquired this Glenayre cabinet from a cell phone provider that was bought out by Verizon. Would you have any interest in purchasing this or have a potential client I could contact?

Blake Sorensen
E-Comm and Inside Sales Lead
R3NEW Recycling
office: 920.358.0103

Proud to be NE Wisconsin's ONLY Certified Electronics Recycler!

Editor's Note:

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If you have any wireless equipment that you would like to buy or sell, please let me know. I don't charge individuals for listing something for sale. If a sale is made through this newsletter, I ask the seller to send me a 10% commission, much the same as the voluntary payments that are requested on the Internet for shareware. There is no cost to the buyer.

There is a charge for companies wanting to put their products in the newsletter and on my web site. There is no obligation for payment of a commission for this kind of basic advertising. Click here for details.


The Wireless Messaging News

Still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

Best regards,
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Newsletter Editor

Brad Dye
P.O. Box 266
Fairfield, IL 62837 USA

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Skype: braddye
Twitter: @BradDye1
Telephone: 618-599-7869
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Ebola Virus

“We must act now to prevent further spread of EBOLA VIRUS . If we do not act collectively, EBOLA VIRUS will wipe all whole populations and generations into their grave. The call to action is now.”

― Lailah Gifty Akita

Lailah Gifty Akita is a Ghanaian and founder of Smart Youth Volunteers Foundation. She obtained a BSc in Renewable Natural Resources Management at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi-Ghana. She also had MPhil in Oceanography at the University of Ghana. She is PhD-Student, Studying Geosciences at International Max Planck Research School for Global Biogeochemical Cycles-Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Germany (2011 to date). Lailah is an influential lady with the passion of empowering the mind of young people to make a great difference.
Source: (Quotes About Ebola)


Ebola Virus

Mercy Kennedy, 9, cries after she learned her mother had died, outside her home in Monrovia, Liberia, on October 2, 2014. Kennedy's mother was taken away by an ambulance to an Ebola ward the day before.
(AP Photo/Jerome Delay)


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