Report: LightSquared disrupts 75 percent of GPS

{mosads} LightSquared plans to provide wholesale wireless broadband service throughout the country, but the company has struggled to keep its signals from interfering with GPS devices.

After testing earlier this year confirmed the interference problem, LightSquared agreed to make technical adjustments to its network. The company was hopeful the latest round of testing would show it had largely addressed the problem.

Martin Harriman, executive vice president for LightSquared, told Bloomberg the government officials assumed LightSquared would operate its towers at a higher power level than it really will and they set an “extraordinarily conservative” threshold to determine interference.

He said the network would only interfere with about 10 percent of GPS devices.

Harriman also told Bloomberg he was “outraged by the illegal leak of incomplete government data.”

“This breach attempts to draw an inaccurate conclusion to negatively influence the future of LightSquared and narrowly serve the business interests of the GPS industry,” he said.

LightSquared needs approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to launch its network. FCC officials have said they will not allow the company to move forward until it demonstrates it has resolved the GPS problem.

But some Republicans have questioned why the FCC allowed LightSquared to get as far as it has in the regulatory approval process.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has pledged to block President Obama’s two nominees to the FCC unless the agency releases internal documents related to its review of the wireless company.

Tags Chuck Grassley

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