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Wireless News Aggregation

Friday — February 21, 2020 — Issue No. 896

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The Wireless
saging News

Microsoft is rolling out changes coming to Windows 10 20H1 to improve driver updates via Windows Update

by Laurent Giret, February 21, 2020

Microsoft announced earlier this week that it was making some changes to Windows Update to make the process of installing driver updates more seamless for Windows 10 users (via BetaNews). As Microsoft previously explained to Windows Insiders back in September, starting with Windows 10 version 2004 (20H1), Windows Update will automatically keep your drivers up-to-date, and optional driver updates will now appear in a new page under Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > View optional updates.

This new Optional Update area in Windows Update means that users will no longer need to acquire optional drivers via the Device Manager. “The new Optional updates area will enable support teams to easily direct users to the right driver,” Microsoft also emphasized yesterday.

Another important change the company announced yesterday is for the Hardware Dev Center, with all partners now being able to publish driver updates as automatic. While some of you may not like the idea of automatic driver updates, the company says that publishers can still choose the “manual” delivery option. Moreover, driver updates that will be distributed automatically through Windows Update will actually roll out gradually to users, and that should allow Microsoft and its partners time to identify any issues during the process.

Here’s what Kevin Tremblay from the Microsoft Tech Community told me when I asked him more details about these changes related to the Hardware Dev Center:

All drivers published as automatic are subject to driver flighting, and gradual rollout. During these periods we are reviewing telemetry around the performance of the driver, and it’s effects on overall system health. We catch a lot of driver issues this way before they hit the Windows user base writ large. From an end user perspective we believe this will result in higher quality drivers (stable, performant) being delivered, and a better ability to stay current.

We are constantly watching and learning here based on the data we see coming back from the field. We’ll continue to make adjustments (as we have been all along) based on what we are seeing.

Keep in mind that these Windows Update changes will only affect Windows 10 20H1 and newer, and Microsoft has no plans to bring the new Windows Update experience to older version of the OS. “We believe that this new effort will enable our collective customers to get the highest quality, and most reliable drivers faster and with less friction,” the company explained, and hopefully this will lead to a more seamless experience for Windows 10 users. [source]

Wireless Messaging News

  • Emergency Radio Communications
  • Wireless Messaging
  • Critical Messaging
  • Two-way Radio
  • Technology
  • Telemetry
  • Science
  • Paging
  • Wi-Fi
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This doesn't mean that nothing is ever published here that mentions a US political party—it just means that the editorial policy of this newsletter is to remain neutral on all political issues. We don't take sides.

About Us

A new issue of the Wireless Messaging Newsletter is posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the web. That way it doesn’t fill up your incoming e-mail account.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world’s major Paging and Wireless Messaging companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It’s all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology.

I regularly get readers’ comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Messaging communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.

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

Editorial Policy

Editorial Opinion pieces present only the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of any of advertisers or supporters. This newsletter is independent of any trade association. I don't intend to hurt anyone's feelings, but I do freely express my own opinions.

We need your help. This is the only remaining news source dedicated to information about Paging and Wireless Messaging.

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Advertiser Index

IWA Technical Services, Inc.  (Ira Wiesenfeld)
Leavitt Communications  (Phil Leavitt)
Media 1
Prism-IPX Systems  (Jim Nelson & John Bishop)
Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC  (Ron Mercer)
Wex International Limited

Service Monitors and Frequency Standards for Sale

Motorola Service Monitor

IFR Service Monitor

Efratom Rubidium Standard

(Images are typical units, not actual photos of items offered for sale here.)

Qty Item Notes
2 Late IFR 500As with new batteries
1 Motorola R 2001D  
4 Motorola R 2400 and 2410A  
5 Motorola R 2600 and R 2660 late S/Ns  
4 Motorola R 1200  
2 Motorola R 2200  
2 Stand-alone Efratom Rubidium Frequency Standards 10 MHz output
1 Telawave model 44 wattmeter Recently calibrated
1 IFR 1000S  
All sold with 7 day ROR (Right of Refusal), recent calibration, operation manual and accessories  
Factory carrying cases for each with calibration certificate  
Many parts and accessories  

Frank Moorman animated left arrow

(254) 596-1124

Leavitt Communications


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

bendix king COM

motorola blue Motorola SOLUTIONS



Contact us for price and availability please

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


Hong Kong


W8001 (4 Line/8 Line IP67 Alphanumeric Pager)

W8008 Thinnest IP67 Rated Alphanumeric Pager 4 Line/8 Line, OLED Display

W2028 (2 Line/4 Line Alphanumeric Pager)

For Trade inquiries contact:
Eric Dilip Kumar

  • Available in VHF, UHF & 900 MHz Full Range Frequency Bands
  • We are OEM for Major Brand names in USA and Europe
  • We also Design and Manufacture POCSAG Decoder Boards
  • We can Design and Manufacture to customer specifications
  • Factory located in Shenzhen, China
  • Pagers have FCC, RoHs, C-Tick, CE-EMC, IC Approvals

Visit our websites for more details

For ESPAÑOL, PORTUGUÊS AND DEUTSCH versions, please go to:

Paging Transmitters 150/900 MHz

The RFI High Performance Paging Transmitter is designed for use in campus, city, state and country-wide paging systems. Designed for use where reliable simulcast systems where RF signal overlap coverage is critical.

  • Commercial Paging systems.
  • Healthcare Paging systems.
  • Public Safety Emergency Services Paging systems.
  • Demand Response Energy Grid Management.

Built-in custom interface for Prism-IPX ipBSC Base Controller for remote control, management and alarm reporting.

  • Use as a stand-alone unit or in wide area network.
  • Mix with other transmitter brands in an existing paging network.
  • Adjustable from 20-250 watts.
  • 110/240 VAC or 48VDC.
  • Absolute Delay Correction.
  • Remote Diagnostics.
  • Configurable alarm thresholds.
  • Integrated Isolator.
  • Superb Reliability.
  • Improved amplifier efficiency.
  • Most reliable high-powered paging transmitter available.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 Email:

  • LIVE response possible to any program with Media 1 Live app from Android or Apple stores, summed up immediately for producer on web site
  • Propose LIVE broadcast on Internet. with live response to reach youth with low cost quality education, seeking persons interested.
  • Contact:


“Is Paging Going Away?” by Jim Nelson

  • Click here for English.
  • Click here for German. (Berlin Revision: November 8, 2016)
  • Click here for French.

Here is an English PDF edit of this paper formatted with page breaks and suitable for printing.

Volunteers needed for translations into other languages.

Board of Advisors

The Wireless Messaging News
Board of Advisors

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

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


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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?

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The Mac Pro

The “Rolls Royce” of Computers

I have a Mac Pro computer (late 2013 design). It is a really great machine, although a little out of date with today’s fast-paced-rate of computer evolution. Seems like a new state-of-the-art computer becomes obsolete in six months to one year. Fortunately, it is covered by Apple’s extended warranty.

The first problem started with iMessage failing to send messages after an OS update. After several unsuccessful telephone sessions with Apple Support Advisors, and escalating the issue to Senior Advisors, we finally decided that the problem was probably being caused by the fact that the unit’s serial number strangely did not appear when clicking on “About This Mac” but it was on the label. 

Finally, it was decided that I needed to take it to the Apple store in St. Louis for service — a two-hour drive from my home. So off I went to the “Genius Bar” in the Galleria Mall where a genius programmed the serial number into where it belonged.

Once back home I verified that the serial number fix worked but other problems surfaced. Apps in the dock would no longer run; they just opened as the “show in finder” command would normally do.

That problem was fixed (I think) by the disconnection of all the USB peripherals and re-installing the Apple OS with the “combo” version. I’m not sure which one did the job.

During all this confusion my dog got excited one day when the garbage truck came to pick up the trash and while running to look out of the window of my office, he got tangled up in one of my display cables and damaged the cable.

Not knowing that some interconnect cables are “active” and some are “passive” I just ordered a regular cable and was pleased that the display in question worked just fine with the new cable. I assumed that all Thunderbolt to DVI-D cables were all active because I had disassembled the damaged one and saw that there was a lot of very small electronic components inside of the connector hood.

You know what they say about “assume.”

Based on my mistaken assumption about cables and Apple’s Advisors lack of knowledge; that is where things got really confusing.

I had been using three displays, but now all of a sudden only two of the three would work. The third one was black. I even added a fourth display but the result was two on and two off.

So back through the support system. Support Advisors skills are basically limited to 1) make sure your computer in plugged into AC power and 2) then to do a couple of resets. Friendly people all, but not highly competent technically. Step up to Senior Advisors and the technical knowledge is much better but even at this level of help we still couldn’t get the darn computer to light up more than two displays. All the specs say it will support six displays.

So back to the Apple store in St. Louis, Got lucky with a lady-genius who had been there for a long time. Diagnostic testing revealed nothing so it was sent to the Apple repair center in Memphis.

After several days the repair center they replaced almost all of my Mac Pro’s internal components and sent it back to me at home via FedEx.

Great service!

Except it came back with the same problem. Two displays on and two dark.

I reported this to Apple Service and was told to take it back to the store in St. Louis. I said that wasn’t going to happen again and found that my only option beyond a Senior Advisor was to escalate the issue to engineering. So, we did that.

Several days later engineering responded by referencing an online support article and telling me to read it very carefully and do exactly as is says.

Of course, I had read it before but not carefully enough.

My favorite—and the most competent Senior Advisor of the bunch—went over the article with me on the phone and explained that it was basically saying that the Mac Pro 2013 would only support two external displays using standard HDMI and/or DVI-D interconnect cables. To support more than two—up to six—it is necessary to use active adapters. Evidently the video signaling via HDMI and DVI-D is the same, only the connectors are different.

It was confusing because it said that each port would need an active adapter with appropriate connectors and an additional USB plug for power. A USB splitter would also be needed to power all of the active adapters because the Mac Pro doesn’t have enough USB ports to do it. (Confusing, complicated and poorly written!)

Turns out that there are actually three types of display interconnects available now-a-days:

  1. Passive cable—wires to pins without any electronic components in between.
  2. Active cable—a lot of very small electronic components inside of the connector hood and an additional USB plug to power it.
  3. Active cable—without an additional USB plug for power—electronic components built into the hood.

 Instead of the recommended-antiquated solution, I ordered four active interconnect cables that don’t need the extra USB port for power, e.g. thunderbolt 2 to HDMI and thunderbolt 2 to DVI-D.

A lot of grief could have been spared with one simple sentence: “For more than two displays use active HDMI and/or DVI-D adapters.”  Too bad none of the Apple support personnel knew this. There never was anything actually wrong with my computer.

Anyway the mailman just brought my new active cables and all is well thanks to Quintin—the Apple senior advisor.

P.S. I still love my computer.

Source: Brad Dye Don't miss the INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEO OF THE WEEK “Explaining Display Connectors” following below.

Prism-IPX Systems

prism-ipx systems

prism-ipx systems

prism-ipx systems

prism-ipx systems

Click on the image above for more info about advertising here.

Internet. Protocol Terminal

The IPT accepts Internet. or serial messaging using various protocols and can easily convert them to different protocols, or send them out as paging messages.

An ideal platform for hospitals, on-site paging applications, or converting legacy systems to modern protocols.

Input Protocols: Serial and IP
Output Protocols: Serial and IP
FLEX (optional PURC control)   POCSAG (optional PURC control)

Additional/Optional Features

  • Database of up to 5000 subscribers.
  • 4 serial ports on board.
  • Up to 8 phone lines (DID or POTS).
  • Can be configured for auto-fail-over to hot swap standby.
  • 1RU rack mount unit appliance—no moving parts.
  • Easily secure legacy system messages leaving site for HIPAA compliance.
  • Only purchase the protocols/options you need.
  • Add Paging Encryption for HIPAA compliance on site.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Paging Data Receiver PDR-4

The PDR-4 is a multi-function paging data receiver that decodes paging messages and outputs them via the serial port, USB or Ethernet connectors.

Designed for use with Prism-IPX ECHO software Message Logging Software to receive messages and log the information for proof of transmission over the air, and if the data was error free.

  • Option—decode capcode list or all messages.
  • Large capcode capacity.
  • Serial, USB and Ethernet output.
  • POCSAG or FLEX page decoding, special SA protocols.
  • Receivers for paging bands in VHF, UHF, 900 MHz.
  • Message activated Alarm Output.
  • 8 programmable relay outputs.
  • Send notifications of a system problem.
  • Synthesized Receiver Tuning.
  • Selectivity better than 60 dB.
  • Frequencies 148-174, 450-470, 929-932 MHz.
  • Image Rejection better than 55 dB.
  • Spurious Rejection better than 55 dB.
  • Channel Spacing 12.5 or 25 kHz.
  • Power 5VDC.
  • Receiving Sensitivity 5µV at 1200 bps.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Wireless Network Planners

Wireless Network Planners
Wireless Specialists

R.H. (Ron) Mercer
217 First Street
East Northport, NY 11731

ron mercer
Telephone: 631-786-9359 left arrow left arrow


Let’s meet in spring in Florence. At CMAE20. 28th/29th April 2020

This year the Spring Summit will take place in beautiful Florence on 28th and 29th April. Delicious wine, delicious pasta and vast hills in golden sunlight, through which, framed by cypresses, romantic old streets wind — welcome to Tuscany, welcome to Florence. The capital of Tuscany was once one of the richest and most prosperous metropolises in the world and, as the so-called cradle of the Renaissance, has decisively shaped our art and culture.

Please reserve these dates in your diary.

We will meet at Grand Hotel Adriatico, only a short foot walk away from the historical center of Florence with the cathedral, the Arno river and the famous bridge Ponte Veggio. Find reservation information in appendix B.

Some points of the preliminary schedule of the event you can find in appendix A.

It's all about Renaissance — including of more activity for critical messaging, of coming back to the wisdom that communications shouldn't be only broadband, but reliable, about the attractiveness of alternative communications, about getting more out than putting in, but . . . everybody should and can take part in intensive exchange of best methods.

This invitation could make you a little bit excited about beautiful Florence and of course our Summit.

Dietmar Gollnick
Chairman Critical Messaging Association (CMA)

Appendix A: Preliminary schedule

  1. On Tuesday we will start with a Board of Directors Meeting at 11:00 am and for all members with a General Meeting at 1:00 pm and probably will finish around 6:00 pm on Wednesday. After finishing the first conference day around 6:00 pm maybe we'll have a city walk and after that dinner in a nice restaurant.
  2. Following parts of conference are planned, but not yet fixed finally:
  1. City of Renaissance and Country of Communications.
  2. Message to the Market and potential Customers.
  3. WG1. Next White Paper or so. The 2020 Document.
  4. WG2. Social Media and WWW — not a thread, but a challenge and chance.
  5. WG3. Is that possible? A label . . .
  6. WG4. How to grow. More attention. More friends.
  7. WG5. Why to invest into our industry and what are the new business chances from an investors perspective?
  8. Probably some other guest speaker (surprise yet).

Source: e*Message Wireless Information Services Deutschland GmbH  

Consulting Alliance

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.

Note: We do not like Patent Trolls, i.e. “a person or company who enforces patent rights against accused infringers in an attempt to collect licensing fees, but does not manufacture products or supply services based upon the patents in question.” We have helped some prominent law firms defend their clients against this annoyance, and would be happy to do some more of this same kind of work.

Some people use the title “consultant” when they don't have a real job. We actually do consulting work, and help others based on our many years of experience.

“If you would know the road ahead, ask someone who has traveled it.”
— Chinese Proverb

Consulting Alliance

Remote AB Switches

ABX-1 switches are often used at remote transmitter sites to convert from old, outdated and unsupported controllers to the new modern Prism-IPX ipBSC base station controllers. Remotely switch to new controllers with GUI commands.


ABX-3 switches are widely used for enabling or disabling remote equipment and switching I/O connections between redundant messaging systems.


Common Features:

  • RJ45 for A, B and Common connectors.
  • Manual push button or use Prism IP commands to switch one or more relays.
  • Single or Dual Port Control card for IP or Serial connection.
  • Form C relay—control local connection.
  • Power Loss Indicator.
  • Rear Panel Connector for controlling the switch externally.
  • Power Source: 5VDC for ABX-1; 12VDC for ABX-3.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Radio enthusiasts worry about interference from LED streetlights

By Melissa Voetsch | Posted: Thu 3:40 PM, Feb 13, 2020 | Updated: Fri 7:06 AM, Feb 14, 2020

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) — As the City of Toledo replaces its street lights with LEDs, some are wondering if the sound emitted from the devices will interfere with radio communications.

"The Universe is full of noise," Mike Kehr, an instructor for amateur radio licensing, said. "When you turn the radio on and hear that it has sound and there's no signal there, that's the noise of the universe."

LED streetlight

The noise that the amateur radio community is concerned about is LED lights.

"The prices have come down enough that we can use them in applications like lighting our parking lots and our streets," says Kehr.

However, Kehr says the lights make a lot of electrical radio noise and, "That noise can rise to the level of actual interference."

So 13abc asked the city about the quality of the LED lights that are being installed.

"These are the lights that Maumee is using right now, I believe Detroit as well," says Abby Arnold, the Deputy Chief of Staff for the City of Toledo. "These are General Electric lights. They are all well tested so they meet all the clearances. They're safe lights going in."

13abc also asked Toledo Edison about the LED lights that are being installed. A spokesman tells us they have had no problems reported so far in dozens of other cities where the same types of LED lights line the streets.


If LED streetlights interfere with two-way radios they will also interfere with pagers. Unfortunately people with digital pagers can't hear noise on the channel; they just miss messages because of the interference. With an analog, voice pager you can hear what's going on if it has an adjustable squelch. Either way you might miss an important message.

I went with Ira Wiesenfeld once to visit one of his public safety customers where their pagers wouldn't receive messages in their main building. Ira located the cause of the problem in short order. He just flipped a switch and turned off all the florescent lighting. The high noise level that was blocking the pager reception was coming from solid-state ballasts in their new lighting system. A lesser man would have taken a couple of days to diagnose and resolve their problem and then charged them by the hour.

Leavitt Communications

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

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

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

Phil Leavitt

7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

Friday, February 21, 2020 Volume 8 | Issue 35

Judge Blocks Huawei from Suing U.S.

A U.S. District Court judge this week struck down a lawsuit from Huawei, ruling the telecommunications equipment firm didn't have the legal ground to sue the U.S. government. Huawei filed the lawsuit last year after Congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act. It prohibits federal agencies and contractors from purchasing certain products from Huawei and ZTE.

In the complaint, Huawei claimed that the restrictions were overly punitive and singled out certain companies, reported The Hill. The Trump administration and congressional lawmakers have long had concerns over whether the Chinese government could use Huawei and ZTE to spy on the U.S.

U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant determined the U.S. wasn’t preventing Huawei from doing business in America, but rather, exercising its legal authority to control how federal money is spent.

Huawei was disappointed in the ruling. “While we understand the paramount significance of national security, the approach taken by the U.S. government provides a false sense of protection while undermining Huawei’s constitutional rights,” a company official told Politico in a statement. “We will continue to consider further legal options,” the person added.

Source: Inside Towers newsletter Courtesy of the editor of Inside Towers Jim Fryer.
Inside Towers is a daily newsletter by subscription.

BloostonLaw Newsletter

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

 BloostonLaw Telecom Update Vol. 23, No. 8 February 19, 2020 

Reminder: CPNI Certifications Due March 2

Carriers should modify (as necessary) and complete their “Annual Certification of CPNI Compliance” for 2020. The certification must be filed with the FCC by March 2, because March 1 is a Sunday this year. Our clients can forward the original to BloostonLaw in time for the firm to make the filing with the FCC by March 1, if desired. BloostonLaw is prepared to help our clients meet this requirement, which we expect will be strictly enforced, by assisting with preparation of their certification filing; reviewing the filing to make sure that the required showings are made; filing the certification with the FCC, and obtaining a proof-of-filing copy for your records. Clients interested in obtaining BloostonLaw's CPNI compliance manual should contact the firm as soon as possible.

Contacts: Gerry Duffy and Sal Taillefer.


FCC To Release Mobility Fund Phase II Coverage Maps; Objections Due Feb. 27

On February 12, the FCC issued a Public Notice proposing to release “certain mobile broadband coverage data” submitted pursuant to the 2017 MF-II Challenge Process Order. Parties that submitted MF-II coverage data have until February 27, 2020 to file objections.

As we reported in a previous edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, the MF-II Challenge Process Order required mobile broadband service providers to submit 4G LTE coverage data in a one-time data collection pursuant to specifications adopted for MF-II. In total, 48 mobile service providers filed the required data, with an additional five providers filing certifications that they did not provide 4G LTE service meeting the specifications of the data collection. FCC staff generated an initial map of areas presumptively eligible for MF-II support based upon an aggregation of these coverage data, and challengers had access to providers’ coverage data so that challengers could conduct speed tests of the networks of individual providers and submit data based upon those tests.

Challengers were required to keep confidential the provider-specific mobile coverage data. The FCC is no proposing to release coverage maps showing the 4G LTE coverage of each of the 48 mobile service providers that filed data in response to the MF-II Challenge Process Order. According to the Public Notice, released coverage data would neither show a provider’s complete and current mobile broadband coverage nor reveal information on the spectrum bands that comprise its coverage meeting the MF-II specifications. The data to be released would not include link budget or clutter information.

Parties that submitted MF-II coverage data have ten (10) business days from the date of the release of this Public Notice to object to the release of their own data. The deadline for filing such objections is February 27, 2020. Parties objecting must explain why publicly releasing these data will reveal information they have not already made available to the public and will harm them competitively, including a specific and detailed description of the extent of that harm. Carriers interested in filing objections should contact the firm for more information.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast, Cary Mitchell, and Sal Taillefer.

FCC Authorizes Over $240 Million For Rural Broadband

On February 13, the FCC authorized more than $240 million in funding over ten years to expand rural broadband deployment in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, Oklahoma, and Wyoming. These investments will connect more than 100,000 unserved rural homes and businesses in these states. Broadband providers will begin receiving funding later this month.

“Today’s announcement is another important step in our efforts to close the digital divide and connect rural Americans with the economic, healthcare, and educational opportunities made possible by high-speed broadband,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to see firsthand how funding provided through the FCC’s Connect America Fund Phase II auction is having a positive impact on the Wind River Indian Reservation in rural Wyoming. And the funding we are authorizing today will bring those same benefits and connect more rural Americans with digital opportunity.”

This represents the ninth wave of support from the successful 2018 Connect America Fund Phase II auction. Providers must build out to 40% of the assigned homes and businesses in the areas won in a state within three years. Buildout must increase by 20% in each subsequent year, until complete buildout is reached at the end of the sixth year.

A map of winning bids in the Auction is available at

BloostonLaw Contact: Sal Taillefer

Congress Seeks to Steer C-band Auction Proceeds to Meet Urgent Needs

A bipartisan effort in the U.S. Senate is seeking to change how the FCC will auction a portion of the C-band spectrum for 5G services later this year.

The Spectrum Management and Reallocation for Taxpayers (SMART) Act (S. 3246), introduced in late January by Sens. John Kennedy (R-La.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) seeks to ensure that billions of dollars in proceeds from the public auction of C-band spectrum are used to bridge the digital divide, to enable next-generation public safety services and to reduce the national debt, rather than being used for windfall payments to satellite operators.

The C-band (3.7-4.2 GHz) has been identified as key mid-band spectrum for deployment of 5G services. The band is now mostly used by fixed satellite companies to beam content to video and audio broadcasters, cable systems and other content distributors. A C-band proposal favored by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and revealed earlier this month would provide satellite operators the opportunity to receive up to $9.7 billion in accelerated payments if they are able to clear the lower portion of the C-band on an accelerated timeline.

The accelerated payments are separate from the relocation costs, which are expected to range from $3 billion to $5 billion. Under the draft rules, which are scheduled for Commission vote at the FCC open meeting on Feb. 28th, winning bidders in the C-band auction would be required to reimburse satellite operators for “reasonable” relocation costs.

In contrast, the SMART Act legislation would allocate up to $5 billion from auction proceeds to reimburse the satellite companies for relocating, and provide no more than $1 billion of auction revenue for incentive payments to them.

“The real winners here are the American taxpayers who not only own the C-Band, but stand to reap the benefits of 5G. Rather than bailing out foreign satellite companies, money from the auction of this spectrum should go to American priorities,” Senator Kennedy said in a press release. “This bill gives us the chance to pay down the national debt, improve public safety and get broadband to rural communities that are still handcuffed to dial-up Internet.”

Chairman Pai explained the need for accelerated relocation payments in prepared remarks which said, “We want them to do that quickly in order to free up spectrum for 5G sooner rather than later. And this transition will be much faster if we can create powerful incentives for incumbent operators to expedite the transition. And to make sure they follow through—they would only be paid the full amount if in fact they did so.”

Under Chairman Pai’s proposal, the auction of the lower portion of the C-band would start December 8th.

BloostonLaw Contact: Cary Mitchell

Law and Regulation

Comments on TRACED Act Implementation Due February 24

On February 14, the FCC published in the Federal Register its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing rules to implement the Pallone-Thune Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (TRACED Act). Comments are due February 24, and reply comments are due March 2.

As we reported in a previous edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, the TRACED Act requires the FCC to establish a registration process for the registration of a single consortium that conducts private-led efforts to trace back the origin of suspected unlawful robocalls. Under the FCC’s proposal, the agency would issue an annual public notice seeking registration of a single consortium that conducts private-led efforts to trace back the origin of suspected unlawful robocalls. An entity that plans to register as the consortium for private-led traceback efforts would submit a letter of notice of its intent to conduct private-led traceback efforts and its intent to register as the single consortium.

In the event that multiple entities register, the FCC would select the single registered consortium based on its analysis of any letter and associated documentation submitted by an entity seeking to register as the single consortium.

While the FCC intends to continue to solicit interest by public notice on an annual basis, the incumbent consortium would not be required to file a new application each year. Rather, each certification in a letter will extend for the duration of each subsequent year that the incumbent consortium serves, unless the incumbent consortium notifies the FCC otherwise in writing on or before the date for the filing of such letters set forth in the annual public notice.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens and Sal Taillefer.

Senators Introduce Tribal Broadband Bill

On February 14, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.), vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, along with U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) introduced the Bridging the Tribal Digital Divide Act of 2020 to accelerate the deployment of broadband services to Native communities and bridge the digital divide facing Native communities. According to a press release, the bill would expedite the deployment of affordable broadband service on Tribal lands by coordinating and improving the effectiveness of federal resources.

Specifically, the Bridging the Tribal Digital Divide Act of 2020 will:

  • Establish the Tribal Broadband Interagency Working Group to improve coordination across federal broadband programs and reduce deployment barriers;
  • Require that technical assistance be provided to interested, underserved Native communities to develop a broadband deployment plan;
  • Streamline the application process for federal grants to support the deployment of broadband services on Tribal lands;
  • Establish a Tribal Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee;
  • Sets aside FCC and USDA funds for the benefit of broadband deployment on Tribal lands; and
  • Establish the Tribal Broadband Right-of-Way Pilot Program.

“Reliable Internet. access is fundamental to economic success in the twenty-first century,” Udall said. “It is unacceptable that Americans living on Tribal lands, in addition to Tribal governments, face so many barriers to accessing reliable broadband. Our legislation focuses on connecting Tribal communities with broadband funding and eliminating bureaucratic hurdles so that we can bridge this Tribal digital divide. This is fundamental to the effort to ensure that the federal government is upholding its trust and treaty responsibility to Native communities.”

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, John Prendergast, and Sal Taillefer.


FCC Announces Members of the Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai today announced the appointment of members to serve on three working groups of the Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment (ACDDE). These working groups—Access to Capital, Digital Empowerment and Inclusion, and Diversity in the Tech Sector—will assist the ACDDE in carrying out its work.

As previously announced, Chairman Pai designated Anna M. Gomez, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP, representing the Hispanic National Bar Association, to serve as Chair of the ACDDE, and Heather Gate, Director, Digital Inclusion, Connected Nation, to serve as Vice Chair. Since Chairman Pai first announced the members of the ACDDE, he has appointed several new working group members, including Milton Clipper, Founder, Clipper and Company, representing America’s Public Television Stations; Rosa Mendoza Dávila, Founder, President & CEO, ALLvanza; Garret Komjathy, Senior Vice President, Media & Communications Division, US Bank; Aama Nahuja, Legal Counsel, A Wonder Media Company, LLC; Felicia West, Policy Advisor, Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia; and Dr. Fallon Wilson, Executive Director, Black Tech Mecca. Other members include representatives from Verizon, T-Mobile and DISH. There does not appear to be any rural service provider representation at this time.

The ACDDE is organized and operates in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act. ACDDE’s mission is to provide recommendations to the FCC on how to empower disadvantaged communities and accelerate the entry of small businesses, including those owned by women and minorities, into the media, digital news and information, and audio and video programming industries, including as owners, suppliers, and employees. In addition, the ACDDE will provide recommendations regarding how to ensure that disadvantaged communities are not denied the wide range of opportunities made possible by next-generation networks.

More information about the ACDDE is available at

BloostonLaw Contact: John Prendergast


MARCH 2: COPYRIGHT STATEMENT OF ACCOUNT FORM FOR CABLE COMPANIES. This form, plus royalty payment for the second half of calendar year 2019, is due March 1. The form covers the period July 1 to December 31, 2019, and is due to be mailed directly to cable TV operators by the Library of Congress’ Copyright Office. Because March 1 is a Sunday this year, this filing is due March 2. If you do not receive the form, please contact the firm.

BloostonLaw Contact: Gerry Duffy.

MARCH 2: CPNI ANNUAL CERTIFICATION. Carriers should modify (as necessary) and complete their “Annual Certification of CPNI Compliance” for 2020. The certification must be filed with the FCC by March 2, because March 1 is a Sunday this year. Note that the annual certification should include the following three required Exhibits: (a) a detailed Statement Explaining How The Company’s Operating Procedures Ensure Compliance With The FCC’S CPNI Rules to reflect the Company’s policies and information; (b) a Statement of Actions Taken Against Data Brokers; and (c) a Summary of Customer Complaints Regarding Unauthorized Release of CPNI. A company officer with personal knowledge that the company has established operating procedures adequate to ensure compliance with the rules must execute the Certification, place a copy of the Certification and accompanying Exhibits in the Company’s CPNI Compliance Records, and file the certification with the FCC in the correct fashion. Our clients can forward the original to BloostonLaw in time for the firm to make the filing with the FCC by March 1, if desired. BloostonLaw is prepared to help our clients meet this requirement, which we expect will be strictly enforced, by assisting with preparation of their certification filing; reviewing the filing to make sure that the required showings are made; filing the certification with the FCC, and obtaining a proof-of-filing copy for your records. Clients interested in obtaining BloostonLaw's CPNI compliance manual should contact the firm.

BloostonLaw Contact: Gerry Duffy

MARCH 2: FCC FORM 477, LOCAL COMPETITION & BROADBAND REPORTING FORM. This annual form is due March 1 and September 1 annually. The FCC requires facilities-based wired, terrestrial fixed wireless, and satellite broadband service providers to report on FCC Form 477 the number of broadband subscribers they have in each census tract they serve. The Census Bureau changed the boundaries of some census tracts as part of the 2010 Census. Because March 1 is a Sunday this year, this filing is due March 2.

Specifically, three types of entities must file this form:

  1. Facilities-based Providers of Broadband Connections to End User Locations: Entities that are facilities-based providers of broadband connections — which are wired “lines” or wireless “channels” that enable the end user to receive information from and/or send information to the Internet. at information transfer rates exceeding 200 kbps in at least one direction — must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which the entity provides one or more such connections to end user locations. For the purposes of Form 477, an entity is a “facilities-based” provider of broadband connections to end user locations if it owns the portion of the physical facility that terminates at the end user location, if it obtains unbundled network elements (UNEs), special access lines, or other leased facilities that terminate at the end user location and provisions/equips them as broadband, or if it provisions/equips a broadband wireless channel to the end user location over licensed or unlicensed spectrum. Such entities include incumbent and competitive local exchange carriers (LECs), cable system operators, fixed wireless service providers (including “wireless ISPs”), terrestrial and satellite mobile wireless service providers, BRS providers, electric utilities, municipalities, and other entities. (Such entities do not include equipment suppliers unless the equipment supplier uses the equipment to provision a broadband connection that it offers to the public for sale. Such entities also do not include providers of fixed wireless services (e.g., “Wi-Fi” and other wireless ethernet, or wireless local area network, applications) that only enable local distribution and sharing of a premises broadband facility.)
  2. Providers of Wired or Fixed Wireless Local Telephone Services: Incumbent and competitive LECs must complete and file the applicable portions of the form for each state in which they provide local exchange service to one or more end user customers (which may include “dial-up” ISPs).
  3. Providers of Mobile Telephony Services: Facilities-based providers of mobile telephony services must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which they serve one or more mobile telephony subscribers. A mobile telephony service is a real-time, two-way switched voice service that is interconnected with the public switched network using an in-network switching facility that enables the provider to reuse frequencies and accomplish seamless handoff of subscriber calls. A mobile telephony service provider is considered “facilities-based” if it serves a subscriber using spectrum for which the entity holds a license that it manages, or for which it has obtained the right to use via lease or other arrangement with a Band Manager.

BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens and Gerry Duffy.

APRIL 1: FCC FORM 499-A, TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPORTING WORKSHEET. This form must be filed by all contributors to the Universal Service Fund (USF) sup-port mechanisms, the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) Fund, the cost recovery mechanism for the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), and the shared costs of local number portability (LNP). Contributors include every telecommunications carrier that provides interstate, intrastate, and international telecommunications, and certain other entities that provide interstate telecommunications for a fee. Even common carriers that qualify for the de minimis exemption must file Form 499-A. Entities whose universal service contributions will be less than $10,000 qualify for the de minimis exemption. De minimis entities do not have to file the quarterly report (FCC Form 499-Q), which was due February 1, and will again be due May 1. Form 499-Q relates to universal and LNP mechanisms. Form 499-A relates to all of these mechanisms and, hence, applies to all providers of interstate, intrastate, and international telecommunications services. Form 499-A contains revenue information for January 1 through December 31 of the prior calendar year. And Form 499-Q contains revenue information from the prior quarter plus projections for the next quarter. (Note: the revised 499-A and 499-Q forms are now available.) Block 2-B of the Form 499-A requires each carrier to designate an agent in the District of Columbia upon whom all notices, process, orders, and decisions by the FCC may be served on behalf of that carrier in proceedings before the FCC. Carriers receiving this newsletter may specify our law firm as their D.C. agent for service of process using the information in our masthead. There is no charge for this service.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Sal Taillefer.

APRIL 1: ANNUAL ACCESS TO ADVANCED SERVICES CERTIFICATION. All providers of telecommunications services and telecommunications carriers subject to Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act are required to file with the FCC an annual certification that (1) states the company has procedures in place to meet the record-keeping requirements of Part 14 of the Rules; (2) states that the company has in fact kept records for the previous calendar year; (3) contains contact information for the individual or individuals handling customer complaints under Part 14; (4) contains contact information for the company’s designated agent; and (5) is supported by an affidavit or declaration under penalty of perjury signed by an officer of the company.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, Sal Taillefer.

Law Offices Of
Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens,
Duffy & Prendergast, LLP

2120 L St. NW, Suite 300
Washington, D.C. 20037
(202) 659-0830
(202) 828-5568 (fax)


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

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

Calendar At-a-Glance

Feb. 12 – Comments are due on Truth-in-Billing for VoIP proceeding.
Feb. 21 – Comments are due on Vertical Location Accuracy.
Feb. 21 – Comments are due on Removing Radiolocation/Amateur Allocations in 3.3-3.5 GHz Band.
Feb. 24 – Comments are due on Reassigned Numbers Database Technical Requirements.
Feb. 25 – Reply comments are due on Lifeline Reforms.
Feb. 21 – Reply comments are due on Cable Service Charge Notification NPRM.
Feb. 28 – Reply comments are due on Robocall Blocking Report.

Mar. 2 – Copyright Statement of Account Form for cable companies is due.
Mar. 2 – Annual CPNI Certification is due.
Mar. 2 – FCC Form 477 (Local Competition & Broadband Reporting) is due.
Mar. 2 – Annual 700 MHz Guard Band / 220 MHz Band Manager Report is due.
Mar. 3 – Reply comments on Supply Chain Prohibitions FNPRM are due.
Mar. 9 – Comments are due on All-Digital AM Broadcasting NPRM.
Mar. 9 – Comments are due on 5.9 GHz Band Proceeding NPRM.
Mar. 9 – Reply comments are due on Reassigned Numbers Database Technical Requirements.
Mar. 13 – Reply comments are due on Truth-in-Billing for VoIP proceeding.
Mar. 20 – Reply comments are due on Vertical Location Accuracy.
Mar. 23 – Reply comments are due on Removing Radiolocation/Amateur Allocations in 3.3-3.5 GHz Band. Mar. 31 – FCC Form 525 (Delayed Phasedown CETC Line Counts) is due.
Mar. 31 – FCC Form 508 (ICLS Projected Annual Common Line Requirement) is due.

Apr. 1 – FCC Form 499-A (Annual Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) is due.
Apr. 1 – Annual Accessibility Certification is due.
Apr. 6 – Reply comments are due on All-Digital AM Broadcasting NPRM.
Apr. 6 – Reply comments are due on 5.9 GHz Band Proceeding NPRM.

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From: Leigh Henson, Ph.D. — Former Professor Emeritus of English — Missouri State University
Subject: Technical Communication
Date: February 19, 2020, 8:47 AM
To: Facebook Post

People my age are entering the phase of life whose demographic might be called "advanced seniors." Many in the public may casually generalize that people my age are especially unable to handle technological problems. They don't know Brad Dye—my high school classmate and friend.

I share his post to show how his savvy consumer persistence enabled him to work through a computer problem that challenged even technical support staff. He observes that his computer agony could have been avoided if only a manufacturer had provided better technical writing to support its product. Many consumers complain about inadequate technical support, but how many consumers—of any age—can create a fix for a specific technical writing problem? Brad did just that: "A lot of grief could have been spared with one simple sentence: 'For more than two displays use active HDMI and/or DVI-D adapters.' Too bad none of the Apple support personnel knew this." (Note: Besides its clarity, his fix is grammatically a "simple" sentence: it has one main/independent clause 😉 ).

I was happy to see his post because it demonstrates the importance of an academic field that I devoted my second career to—teaching technical communication. Regardless of the technological mysteries of his report, it tells a plot-twisted story with a clear message and a satisfactory ending (we hope).


“Explaining Display Connectors”

An explanation of the different methods of connecting a display to a computer, including VGA, DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort. Presented by Christopher Barnatt of

Source: YouTube  

Best regards,
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