MTA Conference: Internet of Things & Policy Update

This week I’m attending the Minnesota Telecom Alliance Spring conference. It’s always a really interesting look at the telecom industry – an industry that has been changing at break neck speed due to technology advancements and policy updates.

The conference is going on today – and I’ll be heading there soon. But I took so many notes yesterday I wanted to share them before I headed out…

The Internet of Everything by Vincent Weimer

Ingredients of IoE – smartphones, big data, wifi, IPv6 and

Broadband cost has dropped by a factors of 40 over last 10 years

Why is Internet of Everything important?

It’s the first real evolution of the Internet. The Internet now has senses. (Via cameras we can see, via video we can hear…)

Who is using IoE?

  • Consumer Devices (refrigerator that creates a shopping list)
  • Transportation (connected cars)
  • Medical (remote monitoring)
  • Building (Safety monitoring)
  • Cities (smartgrid)

Products already on the market:

  • Smart thermostats
  • Connected cars
  • Activity trackers
  • Smart outlets
  • Parking sensors

Where is IoE development focused?

  • Infrastructure – building the pipeline
  • Software – need common set of standards
  • Value-Adding solutions – legitimately solves a problem

Telecom Impact: Wi-Fi Cellular

  • Devices will require wireless communications
  • Wi-Fi will likely be the standard – it is the wireless gateway to the wired Internet
  • Cellular will be used for remote access
  • Demand for spectrum and fiber transport networks will be high
  • There is no wireless without the underlying wireline network
  • Network moves intelligence to the network edge to increase speed and reliability (300 miles is a distance benchmark for seamless cloud usage)


  • Interference – 50B devices in unlicensed spectrum add in RF emitters and microwaves makes it even more difficult. May not be noticeable until latency-sensitive applications emerge
  • Security – biggest concern.
  • Privacy – Big brother is watching. When someone gives you something for free, you are the product – as is the case with Facebook, Twitter Google… Unauthorized access and misuse of private data is a great concern

ACA’s Annual Update of FCC and US Congress Policy Matters and Their Impact on Your Business 

(I tried to take notes and  record.  I am not preparing my Best Camerawork speech.)

ACA tried to raise the voice of the smaller providers.

3 actions

  • Net neutrality
  • Title II telecommunications (reclassified from info service)
  • Forbearances from Title II

Main gist: Can’t block, throttle, or prioritize paid traffic (including edge providers)

Internet Conduct Standard – Prohibits an ISP from interfering or disadvantaging a consumer or edge provider. Based on recognition that the tools are there to not meet standards BUT there’s no real feel for what that means and it is expected to come out at it comes up but will be based on “totality of circumstance” which includes:

  • End-User Control
  • Competitive Effects
  • Consumer Protection
  • Effect on Innovation/Investment
  • Free Expression
  • Application agnostic
  • Standard Practices

Reasonable Network Management – Will take in account your type of network. They will look for management based on technology not business priorities.

Transparency Enhancements – Price, Other Fees and Data Caps and Allowances / Performance (packet loss) and Network practices

The ACA worked hard on the exemption of small providers from transparency providers.

FCC has asserts jurisdiction for the first time over Internet traffic exchange – kind of combines retail and wholesale business practices


Application of Title II

Section 2292 – unlawful to make any unjust or unreasonable discrimination in changes practices, classification, regulations, facilities, or services in connection with common carriers.

Major Provisions of Title II that will apply – important consumer protection provisions – Sect 222 (data breach), 225 (disabilities access protections – no telecom relay service funds), 224 (pole attachments) & 254 (partial application of USF)

The following will not apply 203/4, 205/212, 214, 251, 252, 256, 258


  • This will be a case-by –case enforcement
  • Delegation to Enforcement Bureau Staff
  • Consultations with outside groups

What Next?

  • Rules will go into effect 60 days after publication in Fed Register
  • Petitions for Reconsideration due within 20 days of FR publication
  • Petitions for Review by Federal Court of Appeals due within 60 days

Tech transition – you must notify people before you go from copper to fiber.






This entry was posted in Conferences, MN, Policy by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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