Wireless Industry News

T-Mobile, PBS and America's Public Television Stations (APTS) reached an agreement whereby the carrier pledged to pick-up repack costs for local public television low-power translators. T-Mobile did not name a specific cost figure yesterday, however PBS and APTS said the money could go towards keeping service for up to 38 million viewers in rural markets.

Commercial and non-commercial television stations must give their cost estimates to change channels and also file construction permit applications by July 12. TV translators displaced by the auction that must move are not covered in the $1.75 billion the FCC has set aside for repack reimbursement funds. PBS and APTS call TV translators “critical infrastructure” that’s “essential for extending the reach of TV broadcast signals deep into rural America.” Read More

Verizon Wireless activated its Category M1 LTE network, making it the first U.S. carrier to launch a nationwide LTE network dedicated to the internet of things. The carrier said it will offer IoT data plans for as little as $2 per month per device, with customized options available for bulk activations and volume purchases.

Category M1 LTE is very different from the higher categories of LTE that smartphones use. Uplink and downlink speeds are both capped at one megabit per second, and bandwidth is capped at 1.4 megahertz per device. This is said to enable low-cost connectivity chipsets for devices that do not need constant communication with the network. Category M1 modems are roughly 75% less complex than Category 1 modems, which are currently used to connect IoT devices to LTE networks