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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.
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.
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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.
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Cable Finally Loses Broadband Market Share in Q2 with First Negative Growth Quarter Ever
By Daniel Frankel published about 21 hours ago The top seven U.S. cable companies collectively lost over 60,000 subscribers from April - June
The top seven U.S. cable companies experienced a first from April to June — they lost broadband customers in a quarter, 60,239 of them, according to Leichtman Research Group's quarterly tally of the U.S. wireline Internet business.
No. 1 MSO Comcast was flat in high-speed Internet growth in Q2, while No. 2 company Charter Communications bled 21,000 customers and No. 3 company Altice USA lost 39,600 of them.
According to LRG principal Bruce Leichtman, the lowest customer growth figure for wireline broadband that he can remember occurring in the last 20 years of tracking this business was the second quarter of 2009, the height of the Great Recession, when the leading MSOs only added 250,000 subs.
For the first time that Next TV can recall, cable operators lost market share in the U.S. wireline business, slipping from 68.7% at the end of June compared to 69.6% after the second quarter of 2021.
The new LRG tally highlights an abrupt braking for the U.S. cable industry, which grew customers by a record 1.4 million in Q2 2020, with quarantined customers outfitting their homes with broadband service en masse. Cable operators added over 843,000 HSI subscribers in the second quarter of 2021. (Note, LRG's tally is pro forma, given the changes to the individual companies in the consolidating telecom industry.)
Not so much the proliferation of fiber wireline by the telcos — they lost nearly 85,000 broadband users in Q2.
Certainly, the emergence of fixed wireless access factored in — T-Mobile and Verizon are seeing steady gains for their FWA services, which together picked up 816,000 subs in Q2.
“Over the past year, there were about 3,260,000 net broadband adds, with fixed wireless services accounting for 56% of them," Leichtman said.
Perhaps more than anything, saturation in wireline broadband is occurring, with fixed services reaching as far as they feasibly can into rural regions.
Overall fixed broadband services from the leading companies covering more than 95% of the U.S. market added around 670,000 customers in Q2 vs. over 890,000 in the same period last year. In 2020, the Q2 figure was 1.24 million added customers, with telco losses offsetting some of cable's massive gains.
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.
Built-in custom interface for Prism-IPX ipBSC Base Controller for remote control, management and alarm reporting.
Prism-IPX Systems LLC.
11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
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Brightspeed, Ziply weigh in on the true cost of fiber
By Masha Abarinova
With all the buzz of late about ISPs doubling down on fiber builds, there’s the question of whether fiber is cost-efficient enough to bridge the digital divide.
Executives speaking at Fierce Telecom’s Digital Divide Forum believe the cost of fiber isn’t as egregious as people may think. Gary Johnson, CEO and general manager at Paul Bunyan Communications, noted fiber’s front-end costs don’t compare to its long-term benefits.
“When we put in fiber networks we know it’s in there for decades,” Johnson said at a Wednesday session. “We’re not going to be rebuilding it, we’re burying all our infrastructure. So it’s got a long tail in terms of that investment.”
Tom Maguire, COO at Brightspeed, echoed those thoughts, acknowledging that while fiber as a standalone technology looks expensive, assessing its total cost of ownership is key.
“There are some elements of building a fiber infrastructure that are a little bit more expensive…hand holes and duct banks and things like that,” he explained. “When we started putting fiber in the ground it was B-PON, now we’re up to XGS-PON and the optical distribution network didn’t change at all.”
That, Maguire added, speaks to fiber’s future-proof capabilities – especially as the amount of bandwidth people consume continues to climb. Brightspeed has a bevy of fiber build plans, most recently announcing expansions in Missouri, Louisiana and five other states.
Though constructing new infrastructure is important, Chris Denzin, COO at Ziply Fiber, pointed out leveraging existing broadband infrastructure as a way to reduce fiber costs.
“With Ziply Fiber as an ILEC, our civic partners see the fiber network deployments reach completion faster and extend further by leveraging existing network facilities,” Denzin said at the session’s keynote address.
Ziply has put in work building out the fiber network it acquired from Frontier in 2020. The operator has deployed 100G enabled fiber routes across over 80 suburban and rural markets in the Pacific Northwest, Denzin noted. Ziply also aims to cover more than 1 million locations across its footprint over the coming years. Denzin also said Ziply is exploring micro-trenching as a cost-saving alternative to fiber boring.
Other cost-effective measures Ziply’s trying out include an all-in-one ONT router and G.fast fiber nodes. "Swapping out the structured wiring inside older properties is very expensive and time-consuming,” Denzin said. “So [Ziply’s] using technology to find a better way to deliver gig or faster speeds.”
Similarly, Brightspeed has leveraged technology from vendors such as Corning, Maguire said on the panel, to reduce build costs.
“We found the advent of plug and play [fiber cables] seems to be the way to avoid some cost,” he pointed out. “That not only speeds things up but it also helps to reduce the need for splicing, which is where a lot of cost lies.”
Maguire went on to say Brightspeed is also standardizing its fiber cable sizes. “By standardizing materials, we’re able to get bigger reels of things and just cut off what we need and use that same reel on the next job,” he said.
Labor supply is another essential cost component, to ensure there is a skilled enough workforce to deploy fiber. Paul Bunyan Communications is a fiber cooperative that serves around 6,000 square miles in Minnesota. “As a small rural provider, we’re not going to recruit away from a lot of other people,” said Johnson.
The provider is instead investing into building up its own workforce, such as creating an in-house curriculum for local educational institutions.
“When you look at the installation of a fiber network and the IT infrastructure that wraps around it,” he continued, “that’s a skill set we can apply in a lot of ways…these are very valuable skills that we will use no matter what the future holds for us.”
The panel rounded out the discussion with a nod to public-private partnerships for subsidizing fiber builds. There’s nearly $100 billion available in federal broadband funding, as Cisco Business Development Manager Robin Olds pointed out in his keynote.
But the grant-seeking process can be complex, Maguire said, especially for smaller providers. Hurdles can be things like challenge processes and changing application requirements.
“The process differs from state to state, in some cases county to county,” he said. “I think if there’s a way for states to think about ways that they could simplify the process, because anything that a winning company gets out of this program will benefit the residents of their individual communities.”
“We participated in ReConnect,” Johnson said. “Not a simple process to go through particularly for a company of our size. It’s a very complex application process.” He added the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund also has its issues due to not properly pre-screening applicants.
But progress has been made with funding accessibility. All 50 states have submitted their applications for the $42.5 billion Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) program.
Despite ongoing hurdles, Johnson said he is pleased to see what’s happening on the state and federal levels for broadband deployment. “We are real bullish right now that there’s finally that recognition that everyone needs broadband — that universal service matters,” he said.
I would like to recommend Easy Solutions for Support of all Glenayre Paging Equipment. This Texas company is owned and operated by Vaughan Bowden. I have known Vaughan for over 35 years. Without going into a long list of his experience and qualifications, let me just say that he was the V.P. of Engineering at PageNet which was—at that time—the largest paging company in the world. So Vaughan knows Paging.
GTES is no longer offering support contracts. GTES was the original group from Vancouver that was setup to offer support to customers that wanted to continue with the legacy Glenayre support. Many U.S. customers chose not to use this service because of the price and the original requirement to upgrade to version 8.0 software (which required expensive hardware upgrades, etc.). Most contracts ended as of February 2018.
If you are at all concerned about future support of Glenayre products, especially the “king of the hill” the GL3000 paging control terminal, I encourage you to talk to Vaughan about a service contract and please tell him about my recommendation.
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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.
Prism-IPX Systems LLC.
11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
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.
Prism-IPX Systems LLC.
11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Wireless Network Planners
R.H. (Ron) Mercer
FCC considers new rules for emerging space capabilities
by Jason Rainbow — August 11, 2022
LOGAN, Utah — An inquiry into updating rules around space debris and emerging on-orbit services seeks to position the U.S. as a leader in an emerging space economy.
The Federal Communications Commission voted Aug. 5 to explore the economic potential and policy questions relating to in-space servicing, assembly, and manufacturing capabilities (ISAM).
“We believe the new space age needs new rules,” FCC chair Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement, because “the regulatory frameworks we rely on to shape space policy were largely built for another era.”
Rosenworcel said ISAM capabilities can lead to the development of new ways to clear up orbital debris that, if left unaddressed, will constrain the future space economy.
The move will, for the first time, “create a record of what is needed to support and enable the new space economy before the FCC,” said Laura Cummings, regulatory affairs counsel for debris-removal startup Astroscale’s U.S. division.
“This includes consideration of spectrum use by novel missions, application processing and licensing procedures to facilitate commercial activity, and orbital debris considerations for unprecedented operations,” Cummings said at the Small Satellite Conference here.
The FCC said it is specifically seeking information on how the regulator might update, clarify, or modify its rules and licensing processes to reduce barriers for ISAM missions and advance their progress.
It is part of a broader effort to update space-related rules to keep up with technological developments and a growing number of private companies in the industry.
The regulator said last week that it is considering opening up more Ku-band spectrum to non-geostationary satellite (NGSO) operators to improve broadband speeds.
Other initiatives include identifying more spectrum for commercial space launches, a review of application processes for satellite systems, and exploring new space-based connectivity opportunities with V-band spectrum.
“It’s a lot,” Rosenworcel said, adding that the FCC has increased the size of its division responsible for satellite matters by 38% to tackle the workload.
Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, Vic Jackson, and Ira Wiesenfeld are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects.
Click here for a summary of their qualifications and experience. Each one has unique abilities. We would be happy to help you with a project, and maybe save you some time and money.
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
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.
Prism-IPX Systems LLC.
11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Fast Fiber Networks Have Quietly Won the Broadband War
Thank subsidies and our pandemic-era data appetite. No wonder Google Fiber has restarted its expansion plans.
Stephen Shankland, Imad Khan Aug. 11, 2022 5:00 a.m. PT
Government subsidies and pandemic-era telecommuting have quietly fueled the growth of broadband fiber networks, propelling the fast connection technology from an exotic, expensive technology niche to the mainstream.
In the US, the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund and Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment programs encouraged Internet service providers to bring higher-speed access to places that previously wouldn't have been profitable to serve. Government support also has helped improve broadband in Sweden, Lithuania, Italy and other European nations.
A global pandemic, which turned our homes into offices and schoolrooms, also encouraged the upgrade to faster broadband. Work video conferences and Zoom school lessons demanded more data — often at the same time — than we had previously needed. An explosion in the use of streaming video services like Netflix, HBO Max, Apple TV Plus and Disney Plus added to the demand for fiber at home.
Fiber broadband now has reached a tipping point, passing both cable and DSL in the 38 member countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a club of relatively rich countries. Fiber accounted for 35% of subscriptions compared with 32% for cable and 27% for DSL in 2021, according to OECD data released in July. From 2020 to 2021, fiber broadband subscriptions surged 40%.
The rapid embrace of fiber comes as our homes become more connected. A decade ago, a household might have had a few laptops and a couple smartphones connected to a local network. But an explosion of streaming services, tablets and smart home devices has created a need for fat data pipes, like those fiber offer, that was out of reach for most people until recently.
"It's becoming the new normal," said Jeff Heynen, a broadband analyst at the Dell'Oro Group.
When the broadband revolution began in the 1990s, phone companies upgraded their decades-old copper wires to DSL service, while cable companies started using their coaxial cables to deliver data alongside TV shows. The fastest DSL download speeds rarely surpass a few tens of megabits per second, however, and cable usually is in the range of 25 to a few hundred megabits per second. By contrast, fiber broadband easily reaches 1 gigabit per second for downloads and, in sharp contrast to cable and DSL, uploads that are just as fast.
Longer term broadband benefits
Fiber's leap in speed may be difficult to discern if you're upgrading from a reasonably good cable Internet service. Most services and websites don't supply data at gigabit speeds.
And a network, no matter how fast, won't help people who can't access it. Fiber broadband does little to address the digital divide, particularly given that programs to bring broadband to lower income families are expiring. Fiber broadband is a premium option. Even where it's available, it isn't always affordable.
As with 5G mobile networks, however, the full impact of the improvements may come over time. Better speeds and lower communication delays pave the way for the more deeply digital lives we'll soon be living. Networked devices, streaming video, remote work, smart homes and software updates for our cars all add up to a need for more network capacity.
On Wednesday, Google Fiber staked its place in the fiber broadband market, expanding to five new states after a five-year hiatus. The company helped kick off the gigabit fiber revolution, though other companies, such as AT&T Fiber, Ting and Sonic, are now carrying the mantle.
Mark Strama, a former Texas state representative who runs Google Fiber's expansion efforts, said demand for the company's gigabit service forced it to move more deliberately. Google Fiber had a backlog of customers trying to get onto the service in the 15 cities it already operated that had to be addressed first.
Google Fiber, which hasn't participated in any government subsidy programs, has benefited from faster, cheaper fiber installation methods, Strama said. About eight years ago, the company began using "micro trenching," a technique that buries fiber optic cable at 6 inches, rather than the previous standard of 3 feet. Now, Google Fiber can reach 500 new homes in a weekend, Strama said.
Heynen, the analyst, said many customers ditched DSL for cable or fiber as the pandemic revealed the technology's shortcomings. Now, as we become a culture of YouTubers and TikTokers, upload speed will drive demand for fiber networks, he said.
Fiber's "symmetric" data rates are also important for appearing in video-conferences, he added. The physics of transmitting data over fiber optic strands instead of electrical signals over copper wires does away with many of the limits that have bogged down Internet service providers.
"With fiber, the only limitations on speed are the electronics on either end of the connection," Heynen said. "It's a real sea change."
Man who built ISP instead of paying Comcast $50K expands to hundreds of homes
Jared Mauch gets $2.6 million from gov't to expand fiber ISP in rural Michigan.
JON BRODKIN — 8/10/2022, 8:00 AM
Jared Mauch, the Michigan man who built a fiber-to-the-home Internet provider because he couldn't get good broadband service from AT&T or Comcast, is expanding with the help of $2.6 million in government money.
When we wrote about Mauch in January 2021, he was providing service to about 30 rural homes including his own with his ISP, Washtenaw Fiber Properties LLC. Mauch now has about 70 customers and will extend his network to nearly 600 more properties with money from the American Rescue Plan's Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, he told Ars in a phone interview in mid-July.
The US government allocated Washtenaw County $71 million for a variety of infrastructure projects, and the county devoted a portion to broadband. The county conducted a broadband study before the pandemic to identify unserved locations, Mauch said. When the federal government money became available, the county issued a request for proposals (RFP) seeking contractors to wire up addresses "that were known to be unserved or underserved based on the existing survey," he said.
"They had this gap-filling RFP, and in my own wild stupidity or brilliance, I'm not sure which yet, I bid on the whole project [in my area] and managed to win through that competitive bidding process," he said. Mauch's ISP is one of four selected by Washtenaw County to wire up different areas.
Mauch's network currently has about 14 miles of fiber, and he'll build another 38 miles to complete the government-funded project, he said. In this sparsely populated rural area, "I have at least two homes where I have to build a half-mile to get to one house," Mauch said, noting that it will cost "over $30,000 for each of those homes to get served."
$55 a month for 100Mbps with unlimited data
The contract between Mauch and the county was signed in May 2022 and requires him to extend his network to an estimated 417 addresses in Freedom, Lima, Lodi, and Scio townships. Mauch lives in Scio, which is next to Ann Arbor.
Although the contract just requires service to those 417 locations, Mauch explained that his new fiber routes would pass 596 potential customers. "I'm building past some addresses that are covered by other [grant] programs, but I'll very likely be the first mover in building in those areas," he said.
Under the contract terms, Mauch will provide 100Mbps symmetrical Internet with unlimited data for $55 a month and 1Gbps with unlimited data for $79 a month. Mauch said his installation fees are typically $199. Unlike many larger ISPs, Mauch provides simple bills that contain a single line item for Internet service and no extra fees.
Mauch also committed to participate in the Federal Communications Commission's Affordable Connectivity Program, which provides subsidies of $30 a month for households that meet income eligibility requirements.
The contract requires all project expenses to be incurred by the end of 2024, and for the project to be completed by the end of 2026. But Mauch aims for a much quicker timeline, telling Ars that his "goal is to build about half of it by the end of this year and the other half by the end of 2023." The exact funding amount is $2,618,958.03.
Comcast wanted $50K, AT&T offers just 1.5Mbps
Operating an ISP isn't Mauch's primary job, as he is still a network architect at Akamai. He started planning to build his own network about five years ago after being unable to get modern service from any of the major ISPs.
As we wrote last year, AT&T only offers DSL with download speeds up to 1.5Mbps at his home. He said Comcast once told him it would charge $50,000 to extend its cable network to his house—and that he would have gone with Comcast if they only wanted $10,000. Comcast demands those up-front fees for line extensions when customers are outside its network area, even if the rest of the neighborhood already has Comcast service.
Mauch was using a 50Mbps fixed wireless service before switching over to his own fiber network. In addition to his home Internet customers, Mauch told us he provides free 250Mbps service to a church that was previously having trouble with its Comcast service. Mauch said he also provides fiber backhaul to a couple of cell towers for a major mobile carrier.
County touts “historic” broadband investment
Mauch has already hooked up some of the homes on the list of required addresses. Washtenaw County issued a press release after the first home was connected in June, touting a "historic broadband infrastructure investment" to "create a path for every household to access high-speed broadband Internet"
The county said it is investing $15 million in broadband projects by combining the federal funds with money from the county's general fund. Between Washtenaw Fiber Properties and the other three ISPs selected by local government officials, "over 3,000 Washtenaw County households will be connected as a result of this investment in the next few years," the press release said.
One of the areas covered by Mauch's funding is around a lake in Freedom Township, where he plans to begin construction on August 22, he said. "Generally speaking, it's a lower income area as well as an area that has been without service for a very long time, aside from cellular or wireless," he said. "The goal is to close the gap on them very quickly."
As for the other three ISPs, the county was reportedly negotiating with cable giants Comcast and Charter, and Midwest Energy and Communications. Those three companies ended up getting the deals with the county, a contractor working on the overall project confirmed to Ars.
Under state law, "Municipalities in Michigan are not simply able to decide to build and operate their own networks, they must first issue an RFP for a private provider to come in and build," the Institute for Local Self-Reliance's Community Broadband Networks Initiative wrote. "Only if the RFP receives less than three viable offers can a municipality move forward with building and owning the network. There are also additional requirements that municipalities have to follow, such as holding public forums and submitting cost-benefit analysis and feasibility studies."
The county's RFP set 25Mbps download and 3Mbps upload speeds as the minimum acceptable tier but stated a strong preference for "at least 100Mbps download speeds, ideally with symmetrical upload speeds, from wireline technology to accommodate present and future bandwidth-hungry applications."
Mauch faces increasing equipment costs
Mauch has made some upgrades to his operation. In our previous story, we described how Mauch was renting an air compressor to blow fiber through his conduits. He recently bought an industrial air compressor at a government liquidation auction, spending under $4,000 for equipment that often costs about $20,000, he said. He had previously spent $8,000 on a directional drill machine that installs cables or conduits under driveways and roads without digging giant holes.
Increasing prices have been a problem. Mauch said he used to buy fiber conduit for 32 cents a foot but that he's paying more than double that now. The handholes that are buried underground at various points throughout Mauch's network used to cost $300 and are now about $700, he said.
While Mauch built the network using his own money, he said one wealthy family last year wrote a nearly six-figure check to fund a network expansion that let "them and all of their neighbors get Internet access."
When we first wrote about Mauch, he was using a contractor to install most of the fiber conduits and installing the actual fiber cable into the conduits himself. He said he's using a few contractors now but he's still doing some fiber-laying work.
One time last year, Mauch was using the rented air compressor to blow out conduits because they accumulate water. On the other end, over a mile away, "people thought it was smoke coming up from the ground and they called the fire department, and the fire department came out on two successive days because there was a water mist in the air," he said. "One day they couldn't figure out where it was coming from. The next day I saw them, and I turned around and I talked to them about it."
“I’m saved in people’s cell phones as ‘fiber cable guy’”
Mauch said network management has been smooth without any major problems over the past 18 months or so. His network generally uses about 500Mbps of traffic, and he can ramp up to 4Gbps as needed, he said. Mauch said he has people lined up to handle emergencies "so I can go on vacation," and took a trip to Europe in March. During his Europe trip, there was an outage at one of the power substations in his area while he was away. Some of his customers lost Internet service due to that power outage, but Mauch's network kept running because of the generator at his house.
"There was no power for about 24 hours, so my house ran on generator for 24 hours, and I could see which customers were out of service," he said.
Life has changed a bit for Mauch since he became an Internet provider. "I'm definitely a lot more well-known by all my neighbors... I'm saved in people's cell phones as 'fiber cable guy,'" he said. "The world around me has gotten a lot smaller, I've gotten to know a lot more people."
|Inside Towers Newsletter|
Why the FCC Rejected Starlink, LTD Requests for RDOF Subsidies
Since Jessica Rosenworcel became FCC Chairwoman in January, the agency has been working to root out applicants provisionally awarded financial support through its Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) program that allegedly can’t prove they can deliver the broadband services they claimed. The agency rejected two big initial winners on Wednesday — Starlink and LTD Broadband. Doubters had long questioned whether the two companies could actually deploy what they promised in RDOF applications, Inside Towers reported.
The initial auction results were announced December 7, 2020. LTD Broadband, the largest awardee, provisionally won more than $1.3 billion. Starlink, the orbital satellite division of SpaceX, took second place with an initial award of more than $885 million.
RDOF provides $9.23 billion in subsidies to be distributed over a decade to support broadband deployment. Initial awards were made as a result of a “reverse” auction in which service providers bid for projects using the least amount of federal dollars.
The Commission said after legal, technical, and policy reviews, these applications failed to demonstrate that the providers could deliver the promised service. Funding their proposed networks would not be the best use of limited Universal Service Fund dollars to bring broadband to unserved areas, according to the agency.
“Consumers deserve reliable and affordable high-speed broadband,” said Rosenworcel. “We must put scarce universal service dollars to their best possible use as we move into a digital future that demands ever more powerful and faster networks. We cannot afford to subsidize ventures that are not delivering the promised speeds or are not likely to meet program requirements.”
Rosenworcel acknowledged that Starlink’s technology “has real promise.” But she questioned its methodology and the $600 upfront cost customers must pay for hardware. “The question before us was whether to publicly subsidize its still developing technology for consumer broadband—which requires that users purchase a $600 dish—with nearly $900 million in universal service funds until 2032.”
LTD was a relatively small fixed wireless provider before the auction. However, it submitted winning bids in 15 states. It failed to timely receive eligible telecommunications carrier status in seven states, rendering it ineligible in those states for support, according to the FCC. Ultimately, the FCC review concluded that LTD was not reasonably capable of deploying a network of the scope, scale, and size required by LTD’s extensive winning bids.
The FCC called Starlink a “nascent LEO satellite technology” with “recognized capacity constraints,” according to Ars Technica. The Commission questioned Starlink’s ability to consistently provide low-latency service with the required 100 Mbps/20 Mbps speeds. The Wireline Competition Bureau said it received “inadequate responses” from Starlink and LTD to follow-up questions. As a result of the ruling, both ISPs are now “in default on all winning bids not already announced as defaulted,” the FCC said.
By Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief
|Source:||Inside Towers newsletter|| Courtesy of the editor of Inside Towers, Jim Fryer.
Inside Towers is a daily newsletter by subscription.
REMINDER: Both Form 477 and BDC Filings are Due
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This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm.
Aug. 8 – Comments on ATSC 3.0 NPRM are due.
Aug. 8 – Reply comments are due on ACP Data Collection NPRM.
Aug. 19 – Comments are due on Certificate of Authority and Interconnection Declaratory Ruling.
Aug. 26 – Reply comments are due on Pole Replacement FNPRM.
Aug. 29 – Copyright Statement of Accounts is due.
Sep. 1 – FCC Form 477 due (Local Competition and Broadband Report).
Sep. 1 – Broadband Data Collection filings are due.
Sep. 6 – Reply comments on ATSC 3.0 NPRM are due.
Sep. 6 – ReConnect Round 4 application filing window opens.
Sep. 9 – Reply comments are due on Certificate of Authority and Interconnection Declaratory Ruling.
Sep. 30 – Middle Mile Infrastructure Program grant applications are due.
Sep. 30 – FCC Form 396-C (MVPD EEO Program Annual Report).
Sep. 30 – FCC Form 611T Designated Entity Report due for Licenses subject to Unjust Enrichment rule
Oct. 15 – 911 Reliability Certification
Nov. 2 – ReConnect Round 4 applications are due.
Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP is a telecommunications law firm representing rural telecommunications companies, wireless carriers, private radio licensees, cable TV companies, equipment manufacturers and industry associations before the FCC and the courts, as well as state and local government agencies. Our clients range from Fortune 500 companies to small and medium-sized enterprises whose vitality and efficiency depend on the effective deployment of communications.
|LETTERS TO THE EDITOR|
You have quite a nice paging site. Pagers have always been so interesting to me. I have dozens. The 2-tone dimension IV, spirit, minitor 1 are my favorite ... my dad use to carry a dimension vi so that's an image that sticks with me ... as of late I have been getting into alpha and numeric pagers ... POCSAG and gsc. I have several of the keynote numeric/voice pagers and they are gsc only... I have 2 people finder plus units. 1 works and the other will not put out any audio. I can program the gp300 radios in them just fine but I would like to change the formats In it. The one that has no audio has 2-tone and possibly gsc and the working unit has POCSAG a/n. I would like to have 4 formats in the working unit. I have the people finder software but I cannot for the life of me get the computer to read or write to the people finder. I have a manual but it does not give any type of pinout to make a cable. When I programmed the radio inside I used a RIB like the manual says. As far as programming the people finder it shows connect rs232 to the computer. I have also tried to do it via the keypad with no luck (7531 and 19 passwords) do you have any information on how I can do this?
Thank you very much for your time.
David "Tyler" WZ5TX
Aug 6, 2022
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