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The Podium

Monday, December 12

LightSquared, Interference, and a Leak

By Brad

With LightSquared still working to ease concerns its planned mobile broadband network will interfere with GPS devices, the draft of a new government report has been leaked to Bloomberg. From Todd Shields’ resulting article:

Philip Falcone’s proposed LightSquared Inc. wireless service caused interference to 75 percent of global-positioning system receivers examined in a U.S. government test, according to a draft summary of results.

The results from testing conducted Oct. 31 to Nov. 4 show that “millions of fielded GPS units are not compatible” with the planned nationwide wholesale service, according to the draft seen by Bloomberg News.

That’s pretty damning, and as you’d expect LightSquared is not happy about the leak. As The Hill‘s Brendan Sasso reports, the company’s CEO is complaining loudly:

[I]n a letter to officials at the Defense and Transportation Departments, Ahuja said that figure was based on “incomplete, selective, and slanted analysis of the data of the testing.”

He said the testing assumed LightSquared will operate its network at power levels 32 times greater than it really will.

Additionally, “certain critical information” necessary to interpret the data is not available yet, according to Ahuja.

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