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 Oz Report

Tue, Feb 28 2012, 9:06:32 am PST

Still the prospect of GPS interference

Still the prospect of GPS interference


On February 14, 2012, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) released three reports providing the unclassified results of the government's most recent LightSquared–GPS interference testing and analysis.

The reports, which follow up on previous studies released in 2011, assess potential interference to GPS devices from the nationwide "4G" network proposed by LightSquared Subsidiary LLC.  Unlike the earlier studies, the new reports focus on LightSquared's offer to use only the lower 10 Mhz portion of its authorized spectrum for the first few years.

Taken together, the earlier studies and the new reports demonstrate that both LightSquared's original and modified plans for its proposed mobile network would cause harmful interference to many GPS receivers.

The FCC has a new comment period (open to March 1) asking for the public’s opinion.  Even if you wrote last summer, please take a few minutes now and write the FCC asking them to protect the GPS signal by saying “No” to LightSquared’s current proposal.  Given this company’s tenacity over the last year, we want to make sure that boaters’ needs are remembered as the FCC makes their final decision.

Important points to make:

• How do you use GPS in your life – on the water, on land, or in the air?
• What would happen to your business/personal life if GPS became unavailable or unreliable?
• Wireless broadband service is important, but it should not come at the expense of GPS.
• All the studies show that LightSquared’s proposed network would cause interference and that there are no remedies.
• Tell FCC that you rely on them to protect the integrity of the GPS signal and that you support their recommendation to stop LightSquared’s current proposal.

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