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LightSquared Launches Rural Initiative to Mend GPS Fences

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Jul 7, 2011, 10:23 AM   by Eric M. Zeman

LightSquared today announced the Empower Rural America Initiative, a new group that it believes will help it deploy its planned Long Term Evolution network in rural areas with minimal impact to GPS systems. The group has five stated goals. It will work directly with small cities and rural communities to deploy its mobile broadband network. It will make sure that fixes are developed for rural agriculture GPS equipment. It wants to make sure that its network can improve rural communities' broadband and GPS options. The ERAI will work with small towns so that LightSquared's network becomes an option for first repsonders and public safety agencies. Last, it wants to "close the broadband adoption gap" in rural American communities. LightSquared is currently awaiting word from the Federal Communications Commission on the fate of its planned LTE network. Extensive testing proved that the LTE network interferes with GPS services. LightSquared has proposed a fix for the GPS problem, but the FCC hasn't yet given it the green light to proceed in building out the network.


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