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Old 12-23-2012, 10:45 AM
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Default Somerset Co., NJ - County may have wasted $6 mil because of revised policy on freqs

Somerset County may have wasted $6 million because of revised policy on radio frequencies | NJ.com
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:26 AM
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I submitted this yesterday! So much for being moderated!
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Old 12-24-2012, 9:48 PM
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I'm going to assume they're talking about the project that FirsNet is overseeing? If my assumption is correct, what is Summerset's issue since the FirstNet project is data only at this point? Or did I miss something?
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:39 PM
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Without knowning their actual project (as its not stated specifically in the article and I am not going to dig it up at the moment) it could be FirstNet related, but I don't recall them being on the very short list of LTE projects that was already in the work when FS was created.

The projects that were affected due to funding changes and license changes that I know of was San Franscico, Houston, Mississipi, Adams County Colorado, Charolette NC. These were the inital federally funded projects. Several have gotten the go head to keep going as equipment was already bought and delivered and others are kinda in limbo.

Public Safety LTE can still be deployed, but if the freq is the issue than thats not really a super big deal as most equipment has a decent workable bandwidth where minor adjustments can be made.

When I re-read it, its talking about an 11 year deadline which IIRC is a line drawn in the sand for 6.25 ultra-narrowbanding which many in the industry don't see happening after this round. Might be a tad premature for them to start freaking out about it.
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:55 PM
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Sounds like they are t-band. T-band has to be returned for auction in 9-11 years as a result of the FirstNet legislation. But the relocation is supposed to be at no cost to the licensee.
I suspect they started narrow banding before the blanket waiver on t-band narrow banding.
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Old 12-25-2012, 10:37 AM
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Got to love bias in the media. Yes, Somerset County is on T-Band, but before T-Band is written off, there are some important considerations:

* That "no cost to licensee" thing is a big one. Many people have looked at in-kind replacements in land mobile spectrum. There is none. Not even within the 700 MHz narrowbanded segment.

* LTE is infrastructure. There is no current "off network solution" (the radios cannot talk simplex). The 3rd Generation Partnership Program (3GPP), the promoters of LTE, don't necessarily want simplex operation. It doesn't produce a revenue stream for them - they are mostly cellular companies. Tactical operations have to endure whether the infrastructure is there or not. The only simplex operation currently being investigated by "industry" is targeted advertisement that detects you and your proximity to a store, and broadcasts a commercial to you. Public safety has no R&D organization to call its own... it collectively abdicates that to the manufacturer community who passes the expense back to public safety at a premium.

* As we've seen in many, many man-made and natural disasters, infrastructure is the first thing to take a dump. One of the FirstNet board members whose daddy caught the Son of Sam Killer back in the 70s was quite vocal after Hurricane Sandy saying the public safety broadband infrastructure had to be more resilient than cellular. There were critics in the cellular industry saying it would be incredibly expensive and might not be do-able (they were probably not born yet at the height of the Cold War when the impossible not only WAS possible, but was delivered in place and operational in 32 months). Sadly, these can-do guys are probably gone today.

* There is also an opportunity cost. UHF has become the de facto large system platform across NJ. Somerset County would lose its current interoperability with other UHF systems in and around it.

Let's look at reality: we've set up incompetent systems of oversight in other major undertakings. "Rebanding" 800 MHz was supposed to take a few years. Instead, it's been like building the pyramids. Additionally, the legislation was hasty and ill-contrived. The people who bargained it away behind closed doors were idiots who only had one thing on their mind and would pursue it at all costs (and got it). The clowns who demanded the give back and the idiots who acquiesced to it will be long gone in 8 years and one can only hope they will be far away the Beltway. There is compelling evidence that this configuration IS NOT intended for voice communication at the moment and will likely not be ready for decades. There are some nifty products, but (as a guy who has actually worn a badge) I wouldn't trust my life to any of them. We have a split between practicality and nifty. Engineers live in the nifty and sell that nifty to their bosses who want to make billions of dollars in revenue by giving you things you probably don't need. It's up to YOU to ground them back to practicality. To that end, if you're reading this and you are a firefighter, EMT, or police officer, you owe it to yourself and the people you serve with go to a trade show, take look at new products and publicly critique them. Put them on Twitter (seems that's the only way script kiddies notice anything these days). Introduce yourself to your Congressional Representative and make sure he or she knows exactly how you feel (civilly and respectfully, of course). If you don't have that dialogue, you can be sure someone else is... and what they say financially benefits them. Then you're just going for a ride at your own expense.

TL; DR, don't write off T-Band just yet.
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Old 12-25-2012, 10:48 AM
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Nextel was the preferred public safety communications medium... Just look at EVERY DEA,Fed,Local Cop and you would see a Nextel strapped to their hip.. They used that "JUNK" network as if it was the only means of communications they had... 9 out of 10 Public Safety operator would say Nextel was the Motts of radio...So LTE will be the replacement they want now that Nextel is all but gone
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Old 12-25-2012, 2:27 PM
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Currently Motorola is enabling a solution with the LEX700 and APX radios to jump to a LTE network when the radios go into areas that the two-way system can't reach into. So if your carrying a LEX700, and an APX radio with bluetooth, if the APX goes into an out of range condition and the LEX is seeing the LTE or commerical network, the LEX will act as a gateway so comms can take place.

At least thats the plan. I have heard of it working well in mockup's and field tests.

Either way, there are many statewide radio networks these days with limited loading all due to the "this is my castle" mentality where everyone wants to stay with their own radios than a common infrastruture. Granted there are some larger cities where you may want to keep it that way, but "mom and pop" towns could greatly benefit.

This is fairly true on the east coast and especially the northeast, whereas as you head west, people can process math better and see the greater cost vs benefit by going onto a state or regional system.
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Old 12-25-2012, 4:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PJH View Post
Currently Motorola is enabling a solution with the LEX700 and APX radios to jump to a LTE network when the radios go into areas that the two-way system can't reach into. So if your carrying a LEX700, and an APX radio with bluetooth, if the APX goes into an out of range condition and the LEX is seeing the LTE or commerical network, the LEX will act as a gateway so comms can take place.

At least thats the plan. I have heard of it working well in mockup's and field tests.
I've seen it working that way. They had a beta at the Minneapolis APCO convention. More likely is that the LTE system would be sporadic and the APX would fall back into the land mobile system. You can control where you put your radio system's coverage, but with all the hands in the LTE pot, it will probably be a take-it-or-leave-it. And it's just a waveform. So, why not just put extra memory into the APX and just run that? I liked Harris' BeOn a lot better. It's an app that runs on any Android phone and you don't have to get a special public safety grade anything to make it work.
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Old 12-27-2012, 5:40 AM
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Somerset had an immediate need to improve communications and the system was designed and ordered before Rep King and company decided to drive the T-Band giveback law.

Misinformed media twists the facts to get the story and get the public rialed up.
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