Despite LightSquared’s best efforts to spin the GPS interference issue as “needlessly complex” and turning “basic engineering issues into a political debate”, I’m told that this spin is yet again doomed to fail, once the results of the NTIA tests of cellular and general navigation results are published next week.
These results were described to me as “devastating”, because far from confirming (as most people have assumed) that there is no problem with cellular and general navigation devices if LightSquared limits its operations to the lower part of the L-band, in fact a “good chunk” of these 400 million devices will suffer interference at the 1dB C/No degradation that the NTIA has set out as the maximum acceptable impact level, even if the interference is not as overwhelming as under LightSquared’s original plan.
This comes only a day after LightSquared proclaimed to the FCC that it is “well on its way to demonstrating that GPS interference issues have been resolved”. As a result, it will be interesting to see how LightSquared tries to spin its way out of this problem. Perhaps LightSquared will tell the FCC that it should ignore not only the “subjective views” of the federal agencies but all of their testing as well?
After all, surely we can rely on LightSquared’s own “independent testing” to be more unbiased than those pesky federal agencies? And I’m sure that all of those politicians taking LightSquared’s side yesterday had carefully verified LightSquared’s technical claims before speaking out on the company’s behalf. No wonder our international partners are “absolutely aghast” that we are even having to discuss this “Made in the USA” fiasco.