FCC Approves Lightsquared's Service Model
The Federal Communications Commission has granted Lightsquared a waiver to allow it to circumvent a law. The Ancillary Terrestrial Component (ATC) requires mobile phones that use satellite airwaves to actually communicate with the satellite. By allowing Lightsquared to ignore this rule, it will be able to move forward with its business plan. Specifically, Lightsqaured wants to lease its L-band satellite spectrum to traditional ground-based cellular network operators. The FCC has made this decision despite concerns raised by network operators and operators of global positioning systems. Lightsquared wants to create a national wireless broadband network using Long Term Evolution.
Garmin inReach Brings Satellite Messaging to Your Phone
Garmin this week announced its inReach series of satellite communicators. These standalone handheld devices can also be paired with any Android, iOS or Windows 10 smartphone to provide satellite-based text messaging and GPS mapping on your phone even where there is no cellular coverage.
FCC Chairman Talks Incentive Auction Plans
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has discussed the broad strokes for incentivizing television broadcasters to give up their 600MHz spectrum. The FCC will meet with broadcasters one at a time to explain in depth the benefits of participating.
FCC Adopts Rules for Text-to-911 for All Messaging Apps
The FCC today formally adopted rules that will require all providers of messaging services to enable their apps with text-to-911 capabilities. Earlier this year the FCC said industry players outside the four major wireless network operators need to get on board.
FCC Officially Approves AT&T/DirecTV Acquisition
The FCC today gave formal approval to AT&T's proposed acquisition of satellite TV provider DirecTV. The FCC believes that as long as AT&T adheres to the conditions of the deal, it will serve the broader public interest.
FCC Chair Floats 3.5GHz Sharing Proposal
The FCC is moving forward with plans to free up a portion of the 3.5GHz band for wireless broadband use. The agency has been exploring the idea of sharing the airwaves with the incumbent users, including the military, and wants to make 150MHz of the spectrum available for wireless purposes.