Donny Jackson

Urgent Communications

Donny Jackson is editor of Urgent Communications magazine. Before joining UC in 2002, he covered telecommunications for four years as a freelance writer and as news editor for Telephony magazine. Prior to that, he worked for suburban newspapers in the Dallas area, serving as editor-in-chief for the Irving News and the Las Colinas Business News.

FirstNet begins post-bid evaluation process after proposal deadline passes
​FirstNet announces that it will be “moving forward” with its evaluation process after the passage of today’s deadline for proposals from offeror teams willing to build and maintain a nationwide public-safety broadband network.
FCC cites public-safety needs, proposes to revamp network-outage reporting process to include IP-based systems
FCC commissioners vote to refine network-outage reports that must be filed to reflect the performance of legacy networks, in addition to exploring the idea that wireless carriers and commercial broadband providers with IP-based systems would be subject to similar requirements in the interest of public safety.
Data911 announces new interface that lets more devices interoperate with in-vehicle displays
Data911 announces the availability of its new Multi-function Display Interface (MDI) that lets the company’s in-vehicle touchscreen displays work with computing non-Data911 computing devices while saving valuable space in the vehicle cabin, according to company officials.
Utilities look to FCC for action on 4.9 GHz spectrum, UTC official says
Utilities soon could have the right to access spectrum in the 4.9 GHz band for broadband connectivity, an official for the newly named Utilities Technology Council (UTC) said during an IWCE’s Urgent Communications webinar examining communications migration challenges for utilities.
Ransomware losses on track to exceed $1 billion this year in U.S., panel testifies to Congress
Ransomware attacks on the computer systems of governments, enterprises and individuals continues to grow, with losses on pace to exceed $1 billion during 2016, federal lawmakers and panelist said yesterday during a Senate subcommittee hearing to explore the issue.
Cybersecurity experts outline challenges associated with FirstNet, other public-safety communications 1
FirstNet plans to provide state-of-the-art cybersecurity by employing innovative methods that offerors are expected to propose in the request-for-proposals (RFP) process, but the entire public-safety community needs to take action to help ensure that subscriber agencies are not negatively impacted by cyberthreats, according to a panel of cybersecurity experts.
Impact Power Technologies announces strategic partnerships, battery buyback recycling program
Lithium-polymer replacement-battery manufacturer Impact Power Technologies (IPT) recently announces a battery-buyback program to recycle old batteries from customers, as well as two strategic partnerships.
FCC task force outlines upcoming work on cybersecurity, architecture and funding for next-gen 911
Members of the FCC’s Task Force on Optimal PSAP Architecture (TFOPA) discuss this year’s vision for the second phase of their work, which includes providing greater detail about the cybersecurity, architecture transition and funding components of the report on next-generation 911 (NG911) that was released early this year.
Anritsu, TRX Systems partner to deliver easy-to-use RF signal-mapping solution for indoor environments
Anritsu announces the availability of the MA8100A Series TRX NEON Signal Mapper, an in-building RF-coverage mapping solution developed in partnership with TRX Systems that is designed to significantly reduce the time and effort needed to map RF coverage in areas where GPS signals are unavailable or unreliable.
Locals should prepare for power outage of weeks, not days, caused by cyber or other grid threats
A widespread, long-term outage caused by a cyberattack is “very unlikely,” but other threats are great enough that local governments should prepare for a potential outage of one or two weeks, according to one expert who recently testified before Congress on the subject.
AT&T highlights dispatch interoperability, efforts to make enhanced PTT services better for enterprises
AT&T announces new features to its enhanced push-to-talk service that are designed to provide improved interoperability with enterprises’ existing LMR and dispatch systems, as well as a broader portfolio of devices and accessories that are geared for myriad use cases, according to an official for the carrier.
FirstNet changes contracting officer for nationwide RFP 1
​FirstNet announces a change in the contracting officer who would execute the deal with a contractor to be selected this year as part of a evaluation process that will begin in earnest after May 31, the deadline for offeror teams to make their proposals to build and maintain a nationwide public-safety broadband network.
Florida county realizes benefits of integrated text-to-911 capability
Integrated text-to-911 service has proven to be beneficial to citizen in Collier County, Fla., and has not been a burden to telecommunicators in the local public-safety answering point (PSAP), according to a key county official.
FCC takes step to replace TTY with real-time text (RTT) technology, points to text-to-911 adoption
FCC commissioners today voted to propose rules that recognized real-time text (RTT) technology as a replacement for legacy text-telephone (TTY) device that have been used by hearing- and speech-impaired users for decades. RTT would replace TTY on wireless phone networks beginning in December 2017, and the FCC proceeding will consider a similar transition for IP-based landline networks and broader text-to-911 services.
FirstNet official clarifies evaluation process, public-safety pricing goals
After receiving bids from offerors on May 31, FirstNet evaluators will engage in a lengthy, negotiation-filled process in an effort to forge the best arrangement with its contractor on behalf of public-safety users, a FirstNet official said during a session at IWCE 2016.

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