APCO asks to relieve narrowbanding from T-Band

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902

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Washington, DC - Imminent freeze of T-Band licenses

(From Utilities Telecom Council)

David Furth, acting Bureau Chief of the Federal Communication Commission’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau announced today that the FCC will immediately freeze applications for new stations and major modification in the 470-512 MHz private land mobile band, also known as the “T-Band”. The announcement was made at the annual meeting of the Land Mobile Communications Council (LMCC) annual meeting in Washington DC. LMCC is the association of FCC certification frequency advisory committees, or frequency coordinators. Mr. Furth said the FCC would issue a public notice detailing the parameters of the freeze within a week. He said applications for minor changes to existing systems would be accepted, but applications for major changes to existing operations, and new systems, would be dismissed and not processed. Mr. Furth did not comment on what the FCC would do with applications currently pending at the Commission, but UTC believes it is likely these applications will not be processed.

FCC Announces Freeze of Land Mobile T-Band | UTC Insight
 

gatekeep

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I am reading this right, right? This states that public safety and I/B systems in UHF T-band have 9 years to relocate else where?

Who made that dumb decision? It almost seems as if the fed decided it would be fantastic to spend millions, if not billions, to relocate public safety and I/B. More money we don't have.
 

gewecke

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I am reading this right, right? This states that public safety and I/B systems in UHF T-band have 9 years to relocate else where?

Who made that dumb decision? It almost seems as if the fed decided it would be fantastic to spend millions, if not billions, to relocate public safety and I/B. More money we don't have.
Being a vet, I am somewhat patriotic. But "officially" our government is SCREWED!! :mad:


73,
n9zas
 

GTR8000

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Here's a very interesting bit buried at the bottom of the article:

Mr. Furth also advised the LMCC audience that existing operations in the T-band would be exempt for the January 1, 2013 deadline to narrow single voice channel operations from 25 kHz to 12.5 kHz.
If I'm reading that correctly, it appears the FCC has exempted all T-Band licenses from narrowbanding. If that's true, that's extremely significant.
 

kruser

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Here's a very interesting bit buried at the bottom of the article:



If I'm reading that correctly, it appears the FCC has exempted all T-Band licenses from narrowbanding. If that's true, that's extremely significant.
I took that as the main point. Why make those users switch to narrowband in an allocation range that is going away for other purposes?
That would have been a waste of money for the T band users making them narrowband all their equipment only to be kicked off the band in 11 years or less so we can have more wireless internet on our mobile devices.
Do we really need all this spectrum for wireless devices other than LMR?
 

GTR8000

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I took that as the main point. Why make those users switch to narrowband in an allocation range that is going away for other purposes?
That would have been a waste of money for the T band users making them narrowband all their equipment only to be kicked off the band in 11 years or less so we can have more wireless internet on our mobile devices.
Do we really need all this spectrum for wireless devices other than LMR?
I totally agree, I think they buried the second lead in that article.

Although as someone involved with a county that currently has two very important new T-Band license applications pending, the fact that they are freezing all new T-Band applications is extremely troublesome. :(
 

902

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I totally agree, I think they buried the second lead in that article.

Although as someone involved with a county that currently has two very important new T-Band license applications pending, the fact that they are freezing all new T-Band applications is extremely troublesome. :(
Everyone is waiting for Mr. Furth's PN to come out. It's expected within a week. There are a number of troubling themes with this whole process. I probably should point out the FCC is not the culprit, but they are stuck trying to figure out how to make it happen. In meetings with the Public Safety Alliance (a group of public safety communications representatives) Congress demanded a giveback of spectrum in exchange for the D-block and rejected 50 MHz of 4.9 GHz. The bill surprised and blindsided a number of people... then it became law. Mr. Furth and his staff know about the state of available spectrum in the affected areas. Some people believe there were political undertones in the decision. Draw your own conclusions, this particular forum is probably not the right place to go down that road. Basically, a very large amount of metropolitan and suburban population is served by T-Band, but since it's not available everywhere, it's a relatively small geographic area.

There are a lot of people guessing at what's going to be in the PN, including the Utilities Telecom Council. We won't really know the whos/whats/wheres/whens/whys/hows until it's released. I'll post a link to it when it does. Like they say on the radio - "Standby - K"
 

GTR8000

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Basically, a very large amount of metropolitan and suburban population is served by T-Band, but since it's not available everywhere, it's a relatively small geographic area.
It's a small geographical footprint, but population-wise, it accounts for a pretty substantial % of the total US population. It also accounts for an enormous % of the call volume in the US, and many of the busiest public safety agencies in the country operate on T-Band.

In a nutshell, the giveback is stunning, and the fact that they are now planning to freeze all new T-Band applications is a huge sucker punch to public safety. If an agency wants to spend the money and milk the next 9 or so years until they're forced to vacate, so be it, that's their call. If the spectrum is currently available, let it be licensed.

Of course I'm sure the FCC is trying to avoid all the crying and whining 10 years from now when everyone claims they had no idea they had to vacate and needs more time (as is happening with narrowbanding)...but 9 years is still a fairly long time to get some good usage out of T-Band.
 

902

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It's a small geographical footprint, but population-wise, it accounts for a pretty substantial % of the total US population. It also accounts for an enormous % of the call volume in the US, and many of the busiest public safety agencies in the country operate on T-Band.

In a nutshell, the giveback is stunning, and the fact that they are now planning to freeze all new T-Band applications is a huge sucker punch to public safety. If an agency wants to spend the money and milk the next 9 or so years until they're forced to vacate, so be it, that's their call. If the spectrum is currently available, let it be licensed.

Of course I'm sure the FCC is trying to avoid all the crying and whining 10 years from now when everyone claims they had no idea they had to vacate and needs more time (as is happening with narrowbanding)...but 9 years is still a fairly long time to get some good usage out of T-Band.
Well, exactly. Stakeholders might take the opportunity to reach out to the FCC (in a polite and respectful manner, like Chicago did), as well as let their Congressional Representatives know how much this spectrum gets put to work for their constituents. I don't see anyplace else to put these agencies (700 and 800 will not accommodate the demand - even though some people who are not in the affected areas have made statements alluding to such) and only an outsider believes they will be served by subscription services and radio emulation.

Keep your eyes open. Lots of stuff is happening.
 

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am I off base or does it appear like the "powers that be", want LMR to go quietly away, at least from public safety. I can't help but wonder if the cellular industry has some master plan to make everyone a subscriber, and they finally want a piece of the pie that LMR customers eat from. I mean, I can't blame them. Whiny consumers with their "I want a high end subscriber unit for free and I want a plan with unlimited use for $5 a month" when government accounts will pay whatever they are billed, will pay retail prices for subscriber equipment (at least in LMR)....

just can't help but notice the push, and of course since these folks own congress and the FCC, they will get their way and there isn't much the LMR industry can do, or is there?
 

902

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am I off base or does it appear like the "powers that be", want LMR to go quietly away, at least from public safety. I can't help but wonder if the cellular industry has some master plan to make everyone a subscriber, and they finally want a piece of the pie that LMR customers eat from. I mean, I can't blame them. Whiny consumers with their "I want a high end subscriber unit for free and I want a plan with unlimited use for $5 a month" when government accounts will pay whatever they are billed, will pay retail prices for subscriber equipment (at least in LMR)....

just can't help but notice the push, and of course since these folks own congress and the FCC, they will get their way and there isn't much the LMR industry can do, or is there?
And some manufacturers put their quarters on every number at the carnival spinning wheel game, too. Many of the LMR manufacturers have made the foray into subscriber and fixed-network equipment for LTE. If one segment no longer yields a profit, cut it loose and develop the other.

You are not incorrect about your observation (I'm practicing my politicalese). Behind closed doors at the Portals and over at Russell, Dirksen, Rayburn, Longworth, Hart, and Cannon, public safety is perceived as very "needy." This fixes the problem child, achieves the national broadband strategy, and makes money for the national debt (and campaigns). For the modern perspectives, go to Google Scholar and check out former FCC CTO Dr. Jon Peha, of Carnegie Mellon Univ. He has written on exactly your observation.

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=Jon+Peha&hl=en&as_sdt=1,10&as_sdtp=on
 

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This whole situation is certainly a head shaker...I could only imagine what will happen 10 years from now.
 

GTR8000

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The waiver on T-Band narrowbanding is welcome news...the freeze on T-Band applications is not.
 

902

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The waiver on T-Band narrowbanding is welcome news...the freeze on T-Band applications is not.
A new licensee would not be able to get on the band. An existing system can make modifications within its structure as long as it does not expand its footprint. There's still a lot to digest and I'm sure there will be more to follow in the next few days. And, a lot can happen in 9 years.
 

im800mhz

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Guess the City of New York got what they wanted. Too bad it screwed the rest of the country.
 

GTR8000

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Guess the City of New York got what they wanted. Too bad it screwed the rest of the country.
What the city wanted had absolutely nothing to do with "the rest of the country". If anything, NYC's stance that T-Band should be exempt from narrowbanding would've benefited everyone else in the same boat (NYC were not the only ones looking for narrowbanding relief, by the way). I think you are of the mistaken belief that NYC was in favor of the T-Band giveback, which is not how it went down. You're entitled to your opinion, but you should have a grasp on the facts first before saying things that make absolutely no sense.
 
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