BEREC, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications, recently held its 34th public debriefing in Brussels. It confirmed, among other developments, that it has made 5G a strategic European priority for the next 3 years, and has opened a public consultation on the European Net Neutrality Rules – which will run until April 25 2018.

Continue Reading Covington Internet of Things Update: BEREC Confirms European 5G Strategy Priority and Opens Public Consultation on the European Net Neutrality Rules

Thermostats you control remotely with your phone. Watches that track runs and provide turn-by-turn navigation. Cars that drive themselves. The Internet of Things (IoT) is a remarkable ecosystem providing innovative and sometimes unexpected functions. But as the number and sophistication of connected devices increases, so too does the need for the infrastructure to handle increased network demands—making the rollout and success of 5G networks critical to the future of IoT.

Regulators at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are keenly aware of the importance of 5G, and with that in mind are taking steps to facilitate necessary upgrades to both wireless and wireline broadband technologies and infrastructure. We highlight some of these initiatives below.
Continue Reading Covington Internet of Things Update: 5G at the FCC, and What That Means for IoT

On December 14, 2017, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) voted along party lines to adopt a 210-page Declaratory Ruling, Report and Order, and Order (the “Restoring Internet Freedom Order” or “Order”) geared towards overhauling the net neutrality framework established during the Obama administration in 2015 (the “2015 Order”).  On February 22nd, the Order was officially published in the Federal Register — kicking off the period for filing of court challenges to the FCC’s decision and for efforts by Democrats in Congress to signal dissent through passing a resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act.

Against the backdrop of these actions at the federal level, for the past few months several states have taken matters into their own hands and begun proposing their own ways to restore the 2015 Order’s net neutrality rules within their borders.  Such efforts, even if successful at the state level, will likely be met in the courts by the Restoring Internet Freedom Order’s explicit statement that the Order preempts all “inconsistent state and local regulations.” 
Continue Reading States Battle to Resurrect Net Neutrality Rules

In 2017, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), China’s telecom regulator and industrial policy maker, issued the Circular on Comprehensively Advancing the Construction and Development of Mobile Internet of Things (NB-IoT) (MIIT Circular [2017] No. 351, the “Circular”), which sets out the policy goals and plans for NB-IoT development in China and concrete steps in achieving them. NB-IoT is a form of Low-Power WAN (LPWAN) technology dependent on basic telecom carriers’ cellular networks using licensed frequencies.

Highlighting the advantages of mobile IoT (NB-IoT), namely, wide coverage, large amount of connections and low power consumption, the Circular stresses the importance of stepping up the construction of NB-IoT infrastructure, development of related applications, advancing the deployment of NB-IoT networks, and general promotion of innovation in this area in China.
Continue Reading Covington Internet of Things Update: China’s regulatory environment steps up for Low-Power WAN IoT deployment

Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission sent a letter to an individual in Brooklyn, New York, alleging that a device in the individual’s residence that is being used to mine Bitcoin is generating spurious radiofrequency emissions, causing interference to a portion of T-Mobile’s mobile telephone and broadband network.

The letter states that on November 30, 2017,

On 20 November, Covington hosted its webinar looking at developments in Net Neutrality and Zero-rating from both a US and a European perspective. Our presenters included ex-FCC Bureau Chief, Partner Matt DelNero from our DC office, and ex-DG Competition Head of Unit, Partner Kevin Coates and Senior Associate Siobhan Kahmann from our Brussels office. The

Date: Monday, November 20, 2017
4 p.m. CET
3 p.m. GMT
10 a.m. EST

Please join us for a webinar dedicated to net neutrality and zero-rating. This presentation will be hosted by Covington lawyers Matt DelNero from our Washington office, and Kevin Coates and Siobhan Kahmann from our London/Brussels offices.

This introductory webinar will be

The FCC Media Bureau’s designated May 29, 2015 “Pre-Auction Licensing Deadline” is rapidly approaching.  Full power and Class A facilities must be licensed by this deadline in order to be eligible for protection in the repacking process that will be part of the television incentive auction. For these purposes, facilities subject to a pending application

Last week, the FCC released a Public Notice (“PN”), following up on its July Public Notice, concerning the software to be used during the Incentive Auction to determine whether the acceptance of each bid from a broadcaster will result in a feasible, and optimal, repacking process.
Continue Reading SpectrumWatch: FCC Releases Information Related to Repacking Process

On 12 September, 2013, the European Commission formally adopted a proposal for a new Telecommunications Regulation (the “Regulation”).  The Regulation would, if enacted, reform the European Union’s telecommunication rules, including in areas such as net neutrality, spectrum allocation, roaming charges, and consumer rights in mobile and telecoms contracts.  The proposal is now being considered by the European Parliament and Council. 

 This post, on reforms proposed for “net neutrality” within the EU, is the first part of a series on key aspects of the proposed Regulation.  


Continue Reading New EU Telecoms Regulation Proposals: Analysis Part 1 – Net Neutrality