Donny Jackson

Urgent Communications

Donny Jackson is editor of Urgent Communications magazine. Before joining UC in 2002, he covered telecommunications for four years as a freelance writer and as news editor for Telephony magazine. Prior to that, he worked for suburban newspapers in the Dallas area, serving as editor-in-chief for the Irving News and the Las Colinas Business News.


FirstNet Chair Sue Swenson, Vice Chair Jeff Johnson resign from authority’s board 1
FirstNet Chairwoman Sue Swenson and Vice Chairman Jeff Johnson retired from the FirstNet board effective today, although both Swenson and Johnson—part of the original FirstNet board named in 2012—were eligible to serve another year on the FirstNet Authority board.
Harris: Don Griffis highlights features of SCBA integration with XL-200 P25/LTE device
Don Griffis, sales engineering manager for Harris, explains how the company has integrated its XL-200 P25/LTE handset with the Scott self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) mask to provide firefighters with significantly better audio quality and volume control.
Hytera dealers say recommended sanctions in Motorola ITC case would harm competition, jeopardize their businesses
Seven U.S.-based Hytera Communications dealers have filed briefs with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), asking the full commission not to limit the sale and service of certain Hytera product, noting that such sanctions would jeopardize their businesses and/or “severely limit our ability to serve the public.”
Verizon calls for greater interoperability with FirstNet, says public-sector business still growing 2
Verizon continues to seek AT&T and FirstNet agreement on higher levels of interoperability to support first-responder communications, although no such discussion have occurred to date, according to Verizon officials.
Hytera: Steve Cragg outlines benefits of new full-duplex DMR communications
Steve Cragg, vice president of Hytera America, describes the functionality associated with the company’s full-duplex communications over its DMR portfolio, including the capability of using mobile and portable radios as a single-frequency repeater.
Hytera: Steve Cragg describes use cases for new E-pack portable DMR repeater
Steve Cragg, vice president of Hytera America, showcases the company’s new E-pack, a portable DMR repeater that can be carried and deployed quickly in locations where fixed terrestrial coverage is unavailable. In addition, the repeaters include 10 hours of battery power and can talk to each other, enabling the establishment of an ad-hoc network when deployed.
Anritsu: Jeremy Davis highlights techniques for measuring RF coverage inside buildings
Jeremy Davis, a field application engineer for Anritsu, explains how the company has worked with TRX Systems to develop an RF-coverage mapping solution for inspectors and facility owners that works inside buildings, where GPS often is ineffective.
General Dynamics: Mark Raczynski showcases FirstRunner deployable LTE system
Mark Raczynski, General Dynamics Mission Systems’ business development lead and product manager for public-safety deployable systems, details the features of the FirstRunner, a 550-pound LTE deployable solution that fits into standard elevators and escalators and can be operational within 30 minutes of arriving at a scene.
VNC: Keith Kaczmarek showcases IOPS-compliant Band 14 LTE network in an 8-pound backpack
Keith Kaczmarek, Virtualnetcom (VNC) board member and senior vice president of strategy, explains how VNC's RAID Direct Access Response Terminal can be carried easily by first responders to provide a "bubble" of LTE coverage in locations where terrestrial networks are unavailable.
Motorola Solutions: Doug Bartman explains interoperability features of Critical Connect offering
Doug Bartman of Motorola Solutions highlights the capabilities of Critical Connect, the company’s new subscription-based, interoperability solution that that provides ISSI-based functionality as a service, allowing ASTRO 25 users to talk with push-to-talk-over-cellular (PoC) solutions provided by Kodiak, which Motorola Solution purchased last year
AT&T FirstNet: Fred Scalera outlines capabilities in new Emergency Drop Kits for FirstNet
Fred Scalera, director of public-safety strategy and policy for AT&T-FirstNet, highlights the capabilities of the Emergency Drop Kit, a 25-pound deployable package that first responders can take with them into areas that lack terrestrial-network coverage. Connectivity is provided via satellite backhaul, and the Emergency Drop Kits can be deployed in a daisy-chain method to establish a larger Wi-Fi coverage “bubble.”
FirstNet board approves $81 million operating budget, allocates money for future network investments
FirstNet board members unanimously approve an $81 million operating budget for the 2019 fiscal year, as well as putting another $81 million in a new reserve fund and $79 million in a fund designed to pay for network reinvestment as part of the organization’s sustainable business model.
JVCKENWOOD announces plans to launch broadband unit, buy shares of Tait International
Japan-based JVCKENWOOD announces plans to launch a broadband solutions business and that it has entered into an agreement to acquire shares of Tait International, noting plans to have “a capital and business alliance” with the New Zealand-based manufacturer of communications devices and networks.
Motorola Solutions: Jennifer Mitchell highlights upcoming location-on-receive capability on ASTRO 25 systems
Jennifer Mitchell, a product manager for Motorola Solutions, explains how the company’s new location-on-receive functionality will be able to transmit the location information of all ASTRO 25 users without degrading voice performance on the network.
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