The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted 3-2 on Thursday to move forward with a notice of proposed rulemaking to consider allowing airline passengers to make cellular telephone calls in flight, a practice that is currently banned in the U.S., although allowed by other countries.
Censorship in the United States
Recognizing that its plan to cover the nation with powerful Internet transmitters has failed, LightSquared has hired legal counsel, ostensibly to prepare for the possibility of suing those it now sees as the architects of its downfall. Its first target is expected to be the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Clearly impatient with the way the company’s plan for its 4G broadband network is becoming further delayed by opposition from the GPS user community, several federal government departments, members of Congress and the FCC bureaucracy itself, a LightSquared official threatened a le
The current GPS/LightSquared frequency battle could be described as Washington’s most recent electro-political struggle.
In accordance with the Federal Communication Commission’s January ruling, LightSquared must, in its June 15 final report on GPS compatibility tests, show that “it is clear that potential GPS interference concerns have been resolved.” But hold that applause, GPS users.
A total rewrite of Federal Communications Commission Part 87 has been proposed. Part 87 covers frequency allocations and the certification of aircraft radio equipment, unicom and other ground stations. The FCC said the proposal is designed to update requirements to reflect the latest technological advances, as well as to eliminate duplication and outmoded and other unnecessary regulations. Comments are due March 14.
Fearing that terrorists will exploit emerging in-flight broadband services to remotely activate bombs or coordinate hijackings, the Justice Department has asked the Federal Communications Commission for the power to eavesdrop on any passenger’s Internet use or cellphone call within 10 minutes of obtaining a court order.
Sky Way Communications has obtained special temporary authorization from the FCC to begin testing planned upgrades for services based on the AT&T/Claircom air-to-ground network, decommissioned in 2002 in a cost-cutting move by AT&T Wireless.