Public Safety Advocate, Andy Seybold, September 25, 2014

The State of California is holding FirstNet Town Hall Meetings in California. This past Wednesday there was one in Fairfield, CA and next week, on September 30, there will be one in Santa Ana followed by a California First Responder Network Board of Directors Meetings/Public Safety Broadband Consultation Workshop on October 1 in Diamond Bar. I will be attending both of these meetings and hope to see some of my California readers in attendance as well. What happens on the State and local level will, in reality, have more impact on local Public Safety than what is happening at the Federal level. For more information contact FirstNet in California at: CalFRN@caloes.ca.gov | 916-657-9466 | www.caloes.ca.gov. To attend in person email CalFRN@caloes.ca.gov or phone 916-657-9466. To register for WebEx, go to https://pscdmeetings.webex.com.

Dusting Off My Crystal Ball Just for Fun! By now most of you know that Morgan O’Brien, best known as a co-founder of Nextel and more, most recently involved with the Public Safety Spectrum Trust with his company Cyren Call, is back in the wireless arena once again. This time his company Pacific Data Vision (PDV) purchased 6 MHz of 900-MHz spectrum from Sprint. PDV intends to turn this spectrum into a nationwide, not quite mission-critical push-to-talk network for customers who truly value the push-to-talk services they enjoy using LMR, had when using Nextel, or have using Sprint, AT&T, or Verizon’s PTT service as well as any number of other PTT applications available today. Morgan and his company are being pretty realistic when it comes to the number of potential customers, and have plans to petition the FCC to permit LTE in what is really a 3X3 MHz spectrum holding, not a lot of spectrum for an LTE system.

However, according to my crystal ball there is another shoe or even two or three that could be dropped. So let’s say PDV can quickly build out a nationwide PTT voice system in this spectrum while petitioning the FCC for LTE use. Now let’s suppose that over that same two years FirstNet makes some but not a lot of progress in its network deployment. By this time the presidential election is drawing near, everyone in Congress is looking for something to grab onto to show their success, and FirstNet is not a shining example of how things get done. So Morgan and his group, now with a quick and successful nationwide build under their belt, turn to the Public Safety community, and to Congress (he has been there before), and pitches taking over FirstNet. PDV will build, manage, and run the network, providing nationwide data services for Public Safety.

PDV’s now nationwide PTT voice network can be the platform for mission-critical PTT over LTE and the 700-MHz band can remain reserved for data only. Now we have a combination that is hard to beat: a proven track record, both data and mission-critical voice, and a company that can do everything that needs to be done quickly, including finding partners to strengthen its position with both secondary users and perhaps financial partnerships. Could it happen? Maybe, and from my vantage point the only group that could make it happen is one in which Morgan plays a role and, I am sure, involves others who want to see the network built and operational. In any event, it is fun to sit in my office chatting with various folks involved in the FirstNet project at multiple levels and then read about Morgan’s new venture. My mind obviously took a big leap. Or did it?

FirstNet releases RFI for nationwide public safety broadband networkFedScoop via Google Alerts Sep 18 16:00 When in operation, FirstNet will be used by law enforcement, firefighters, emergency medical service professionals and other public safety entities in …

FirstNet Board Takes Action Toward Achieving Program Roadmap MilestonesFirst Responder Network Authority via Google Alerts Sep 18 02:25 The FirstNet Board approved resolutions designed to generate valuable perspectives from public safety, industry, and the general public on important …

California Continues to Build a Nationwide Public Safety Broadband NetworkTechnology News – TMCnet via Google Alerts Sep 25 06:05 California Continues to Build a Nationwide Public Safety Broadband …

AT&T, Verizon Don’t Want Caps Included in Broadband DefinitionsDslreports via Google Alerts Sep 24 20:15 Jon Brodkin at Ars Technica points to new filings from both companies with the FCC in which AT&T and Verizon offer up a fairly feeble defense of …

FirstNet probes network design possibilitiesFCW.com via Google Alerts Sep 23 12:45 What: FirstNet, the Commerce Department entity charged with organizing an interoperable, nationwide public safety network for first responders using …

The U.S. is doing broadband wrongDaily Kos Sep 22 20:15 FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler Last week, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler told a congressional committee that reclassifying broadband as a communications services rather than an information service”thereby giving the Commission real teeth to enforce net neutrality”was “very much on the table.” But Wheeler also said the Commission was working to determine whether it could continue to try to regulate internet service providers under a weaker provision of the 1996 Telecom Act. In part, he suggested,…

FirstNet Board Takes Action Toward Achieving Program Roadmap MilestonesPublic Safety Communications via Google Alerts Sep 22 19:20 RESTON, VA – The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board took key steps today to ensure the continued success of its strategic program …

Governmentnewslocker.com via Google Alerts Sep 22 00:50 Homeland Security Today: The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board has taken crucial steps in its efforts to deploy a nationwide public …

FCC Chair: Current Definition Of Broadband Isn’t Fast EnoughAtlanta Journal-Constitution Sep 18 10:30 FCC Chair: Current Definition Of Broadband Isn’t Fast Enough

FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn’t Subsidize Internet Service Under 10MbpsSlashdot Sep 18 08:45 An anonymous reader writes On Wednesday at a hearing in front of the US House Committee on Small Business, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler stated that for ISPs to be eligible for government broadband subsidies, they would have to deliver speeds of at least 10 Mbps. Said Wheeler: “What we are saying is we can’t make the mistake of spending the people’s money, which is what Universal Service is, to continue to subsidize something that’s subpar.”…

Research and Markets: National Broadband Plan for Australia, Europe, France, NZ, Singapore & US: Assessments & Realities for fixed UFBBusiness Wire Sep 25 14:10 DUBLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Research and Markets (http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4gdl4b/national) has announced the addition of the “National Broadband Plan: assessments & realities for fixed UFB” report to their offering. This report focuses on the services offered by telecommunications and cable operators through their FTTx infrastructures. It reviews the levels of speeds offered, the content of offers and price ranges, and highlights the differences between major world regions.

First responders want people in emergencies to know that any CPR is better than nonefox4kc.com via Google Alerts Sep 25 07:15 OLATHE, Kan. — Johnson County Med-Act tracks every cardiac arrest call. They log whether or not a bystander performed CPR, or if an AED …

Emergency communications agency finds ways to hire friends, skirt competitive biddingMcClatchy Washington Bureau via Google Alerts Sep 24 22:45 … new kind of public safety broadband network is so small that agency officials had little choice but to … [Editor’s Note (Andrew Seybold): This articles is filled with miss-information]

Public Safety Communications – LTE/FirstNet and LMR/P25-TETRALondon: The News via Google Alerts Sep 24 19:00 Public Safety Communications – LTE/FirstNet and LMR/P25-TETRA. Reported by PR Newswire on Wednesday, 24 September 2014 (37 minutes ago).

Will the FCC Vacate State Broadband Restrictions?Government Technology News Sep 24 16:00 As the Internet of Things expands and demand for connectivity rises, high-speed broadband will likely become a necessity rather than a luxury for most homes and businesses. But access to reliable and affordable gigabit connections continues to be a challenge in many communities. For almost 20 years, the insatiable hunger for faster Internet speeds has raged, even as existing Internet providers and new initiatives such as Google Fiber have made some progress building out…

Industry NewsAPCO via Google Alerts Sep 24 13:55 The FirstNet Board approved resolutions designed to generate valuable perspectives from public safety, industry, and the general public on important …

The Take: AT&T opposes broadband changes; Cyber chief coming to S.A.San Antonio Business Journal via Google Alerts Sep 24 12:05 In filings with the FCC, AT&T and Verizon object to proposals by Netflix and others that would include data caps in the FCC’s definition of broadband.

T-Mobile US taps Ericsson for 700 MHz, LTE-A, IP-voice expansionTech Investor News via Google Alerts Sep 24 01:10 T-Mobile US’ push to expand LTE coverage and capabilities is set to …

Let’s hope the FCC isn’t as stupid as Comcast thinks it isBoy Genius Report Sep 23 20:45 Hey, you know how you hate Comcast but are sticking with it because you literally have no other option when it comes to broadband services that deliver downloads at a rate faster than 6Mbps? Well, Comcast thinks you’re crazy because you have plenty of options for home broadband in your neighborhood, including your wireless carrier, your municipal fiber network and Google Fiber. No, I am not making this up. Ars Technica’s Jon Brodkin flags a recent filing that Comcast made with the Federal Communications Commission claiming that it needs to be allowed to buy Time Warner Cable because it just…

Comcast to FCC: We already face enough competition, so let us buy TWCArs Technica via Google Alerts Sep 22 20:05 “And well-capitalized and aggressive nationwide mobile broadband providers now offer services that provide speeds comparable to many of the fixed …

FirstNet Seeks Public Safety and Industry Input in Developing Network StrategyHSToday via Google Alerts Sep 21 19:40 The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board has taken crucial steps in its efforts to deploy a nationwide public safety broadband network by …

Verizon Adds 22 XLTE MarketsDailyWireless Sep 18 15:16 Verizon Wireless announced that it has launched XLTE in 22 new markets, bringing LTE to the AWS band (1700/2100 MHz), in addition to its 700 MHz LTE service. Verizon says that 4 out of 5 LTE markets, large and small, now have Verizon Wireless XLTE service. According to Open Signal, T-Mobile is the fastest network […]

We Oppose Net Neutrality Rules On Wireless – Multichannel NewsElectronics – weSRCH via Google Alerts Sep 18 03:40 FCC Chews on the Mobile Net Neutrality QuestionE-Commerce Times Sorry, AT&T and Verizon: 4Mbps isn’t fast enough for “broadband”Ars Technica …

MissionCritical Communications, Radio Resource International, and Public Safety Report74.63.161 via Google Alerts Sep 18 02:15 Comment Dates Set for Text-to-9-1-1 Proceeding (9/17/14) The FCC adopted a second report and order and third further notice of proposed …

Wolff: Nobody’s neutral in net neutrality debateUSA TODAY via Google Alerts Sep 21 19:40 Net neutrality, the FCC’s effort to govern broadband providers who supply …