Update: FCC did not Rule: GPS in All Carriers Must Offer ONLY GPS-enabled Phones by 2018

Reader Bill, below, explains that Courthouse News and TechCrunch misunderstood the FCC ruling. It does not require GPS in particular after 2018.

Per Federal Register:

SUMMARY: In this document, the Commission continues to strengthen its existing Enhanced 911 (E911) location accuracy regime for wireless carriers by retaining the existing handset-based and network-based location accuracy standards and the eight-year implementation period established in our September 2010 E911 Location Accuracy Second Report and Order but providing for phasing out the network-based standard over time. We also require all Commercial Mobile Radio Service (CMRS) providers, launching new stand-alone networks, to comply with the handset-based location criteria, regardless of the location technology they actually use. In addition, we will require wireless carriers to periodically test their outdoor E911 location accuracy results and to share the results with Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs), state 911 offices, and the Commission, subject to confidentiality safeguards.

It seems they misunderstood the bit about "phasing out the entwork-based standard over time" and didn't see the part about  "regardless of the location technology they actually use."I will leave it as an excerise for the reader to dig into the details further. 

--- original post 11/5/11 7 am EDT ----

The FCC has ruled that all telephone service providers — including VOiP services — must offer only GPS-capable handsets [for new subscribers] by 2018 to better aid in pin-pointing the location of 911 calls.

It's not clear how long those with non-GPS phones can keep using them.

TechCrunch citing Courthouse News (update: 11/5/11 6:50 EDT That link has been taken down due to it being in error. I received an e-mail with this subject from Courthouse News: "FCC VoIP GPS story has been taken down and deleted from the database")


Published Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Written by Adena Schutzberg