Motorola aids in North Dakota flood recovery effort Motorola Land Mobile Products Sector donated the use of two mobile wireless communications units to North Dakota flood recovery efforts this spring. Use of the trailers helped coordinate two-way communications for thousands of public safety and emergency workers for national, state and local agencies.
North Dakota was one of the hardest-hit with floods this past spring after record amounts of snow and ice melted, followed by spring rains.
Pete Eggimann, director for Grand Forks County’s Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) said, “During the evacuation, we were able to use our existing two-way radio systems with portable equipment with limited capabilities. Once the floods hit, however, the PSAP was shut down, moved three times, and we could not communicate effectively outside our own groups.”
Each unit contained an 800MHz, five-channel StartSite trunked system. These systems each supported as many as 500 two-way radio users and provided for multiple, autonomous talk groups. Each had a 50′, hydraulically extendible antenna mast for wide-area communications and was powered by a self-contained 10,000W diesel generator. More than 200 Motorola MCS2000 mobile radios were loaned to the relief workers communicating on the network.
FCC Chairman Reed Hundt resigns FCC Chairman Reed Hundt turned in his letter of resignation on May 27, 1997, citing the need to spend more time with his wife and children as the reason behind his decision. He asked President Clinton in a letter to begin the process of selecting his successor. Hundt will continue to serve as chairman of the FCC until Clinton appoints a new chairman. Hundt has been chairman for three and a half years. The term to which he was appointed ends June 30, 1998.
IWCE sets new domestic, international attendance records in 1997 The recent production of the International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE), held April 22-24 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, established new attendance records for the 21-year-old event. Registration reached 10,642 by the close of the final show day, marking a 6% increase over the previous year (which was also a record-breaker).
International attendance soared by even larger percentages_1,395 mobile communicants professionals from 86 foreign countries made the trip to Las Vegas for IWCE_a 21% increase over the previous year. Exhibitor participation also surpassed all previous records_342 exhibiting companies occupied 894 booths in 1997, compared to 865 booths in 1996.
Kenwood licenses dc/MA technology, opens sales office Kenwood Communications, Long Beach, CA, will license Unique Wireless Developments’ dc/MA technology. The technology will be implemented in the 800MHz SMR and ESMR frequency band, allowing a five times voice capacity improvement per existing 25kHz channel. This new technology could also be applied to other frequency bands, and discussions are under way to take advantage of these additional opportunities. The technology is compatible with existing FM equipment and has a low cost for conversion or migration of existing systems. The new equipment can be made compatible with traditional SMR equipment that uses a single-site, high-powered architecture. Operators will also be able to upgrade a single channel at a time, rather than having to replace entire systems.
Kenwood Communications has opened an international sales facility in Miami. The offices, located at 11430 SW 88th St., serve as the marketing center for sales in international regions, with particular emphasis on Latin America.
American Tower Systems acquires Towers American Tower Systems, Boca Raton, FL, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Radio Systems, Boston, has entered into an agreement to acquire the assets of Towers, L.L.C, Columbia, SC, for $5.3 million. Towers owns and operates 21 tower sites in South Carolina.
Ken Hall, the former president of Towers, joined ATS as the southern regional manager. American Tower Systems plans to continue to develop tower sites in South Carolina and adjacent southern states.
Chadmoore Wireless affected by two separate construction rulings Chadmoore Wireless Group, Las Vegas, received notice about two separate actions on May 20 from the Federal Communications Commission and the United States Court of Appeals, effectively denying grants of additional time for station construction.
The FCC decision denied an original five-year extension to Chadmoore to conclude construction. This extension had been granted in May 1995 to Chadmoore’s more than 5,000 stations but had to be justified in December 1995. A favorable ruling for Chadmoore would have granted two years, or the balance of the original five-year extension. The new decision requires that all of the affected stations be constructed within six months of May 20. The licensees of the affected stations, with the cooperation of Chadmoore, intend to petition the FCC to reconsider its decision and to stall the construction deadline during the period of reconsideration.
The separate action by the U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed the FCC’s December 1995 denial of Chadmoore’s request for a grant of an extended amount of time to construct 2,300 additional stations. However, most of the stations affected by the court’s decisions are included in an extension of the original construction deadline granted to Daniel R. Goodman and Robert Chan. The “Goodman-Chan” extension grants these stations a construction period that will end four months after publication in the Federal Register. The extension was granted on May 24, 1995, and as of May 23, 1997, had not been published in the Federal Register.
Businesses get Signal from Motorola In an effort to better serve customers with its wireless communications systems in the south Florida market, Motorola will begin transferring its select service accounts to Signal Communications Service, Pompano Beach, FL, the authorized Motorola Service Station (MSS) in south Florida. The MSS designation was awarded to Signal in January 1996. During the next 12 months, a select group of expiring Motorola service contracts associated with businesses in south Florida are to be converted to Signal contracts.
Last year, Signal was selected by Motorola to purchase three Motorola serv-ice centers in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties after serving as a charter distributor for five years. The arrangement is part of Motorola’s continuing plan to focus on larger business sectors while converting small- to medium-size contracts to local authorized MSS.
PageMart growth plan raises subscriber base to 2 million PageMart Wireless, Dallas, has announced record growth of its subscriber base. It has attained two million subscribers less than two years after hitting the one-million-subscriber mark. The milestones were achieved through internal efforts as opposed to growth through mergers and acquisitions.
John D. Beletic, president of PageMart, attributes the company’s growth to its long-term operational blueprint. Components of the strategic growth plan include deployment of a direct broadcast satellite system, formation of strategic alliances with telecommunications industry giants and development of a national retail channel. The PageMart network’s footprint was expanded as well to ensure consistent operability and NAFTA-wide seamless roaming through its common frequency network.
Coded Communications, Racom join to provide wireless communications for public safety in Iowa Coded Communications, Carlsbad, CA, has partnered with Racom, Cleveland, to enable public safety fleets throughout Iowa to access various law enforcement databases, broadcast their positions and file reports electronically.
Coded and Racom will share the revenues derived through the use of the system. Coded also has granted Racom the right to market Coded’s in-vehicle mobile data communications equipment and software products to other potential customers.
Through the joint system in Iowa: * State and local police officers on patrol can access critical information from the NCIC, DMV and local or regional databases. Requests that could have taken as long as 20 minutes will take only seconds. * Fire departments can incorporate sophisticated map graphics and database information retrieval to cut response times. * Emergency medical service providers can cut critical response time by incorporating GPS automatic vehicle location options in their mobile data systems.
Boeing to build Teledesic’s ‘Internet-in-the-sky’ The Boeing Company, Seattle, will become an equity partner in Teledesic, Kirkland, WA, and serve as the prime contractor for the company’s global, broadband “Internet-in-the-sky.”
Boeing will invest as much as $100 million for 10% of the current ownership of Teledesic. As the prime contractor, Boeing will lead an international effort to design, build and launch the Teledesic Network. The estimated contract value is $9 billion. Using a constellation of several hundred low-Earth-orbit (LEO) satellites, Boeing and Teledesic will create “fiber-like” access to telecommunications services such as broadband Internet access, videoconferencing and interactive multimedia.
The Teledesic Network will provide switched, broadband network connections through service partners in host countries worldwide. The network emulates the Internet, while adding the benefits of high-quality service and location-insensitive access. Service is expected to begin in 2002. With the network, enterprises will be able to connect branch offices throughout the world to their existing global networks, and workers will be able to telecommute from anywhere.
Teledesic’s satellites will orbit about 50 times closer to Earth than traditional geostationary satellites. The network’s low orbit eliminates the long signal delay normally experienced in satellite communications and enables the use of small, low-power terminals and antennas, about the size of direct broadcast satellite (DBS) dishes.
Batteries Batteries buys cellular accessories distributor Batteries Batteries, New York, has acquired the assets and business of Cliffco of Tampa Bay, a privately held nationwide distributor of cellular telephone accessories.
Cliffco is also a distributor of batteries. It generated revenues of $5 million in 1996.
The transaction was completed in exchange for 193,500 shares of Batteries Batteries stock and $75,000. David Costilow, president of Cliffco, will retain his title at Batteries Batteries under a long-term incentive employment agreement. Cliffco plans to relocate to built-to-suit 19,000 square-foot offices and warehouse in the third quarter of this year.