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TCP-group 1991

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Apple & Wireless Networks

Apple Petitions FCC for Use of Radio Waves
For Data Transmission by All Computer Makers

WASHINGTON, D.C.--January 28, 1991--Apple Computer, Inc. today filed a petition
with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that, if approved, would let
computers transmit and receive information over radio waves instead of through
a wired network.  The petition asks the FCC to allocate a part of the radio
spectrum so that all computer manufacturers be permitted use of radio waves for
wireless computing.  Apple believes that approval of the petition is an
important step in the establishment of the next generation of personal

Apple's petition paves the way for the establishment of a new class of data
communications, called Data Personal Communications Services (Data-PCS).  If
Apple's petition is approved, personal computer users in the future will be
able to communicate with other users and with computer peripherals within a
building or a campus over radio waves.  This innovation would eliminate the
need, in many cases, for local communications to travel on wired networks.

"With the rapid advances in portable computing and wireless communications, we
believe it is essential that computer users have access to this vital
communications resource in the future," said John Sculley, Apple's chairman and
chief executive officer.  "Wireless networks will change the nature of
information tools, making them as mobile and spontaneous as the individuals
using them.

"Apple's action, which will benefit all personal computer users, is motivated
by a desire to ensure that the United States will have made the most
forward-looking public decisions, allowing wireless networking to become a
reality," Sculley added.

Specifically, Apple petitioned the FCC to allow computer communications
exclusively on 40 MHz of the radio frequency bandwidth between 1850-1990 MHz to
transmit data at high speeds (for example, 10 megabits per second) over short
distances (up to about 150 feet).

"The convergence of wireless communications and computers will dramatically
change the nature of computing," said David Nagel, vice president of Apple's
Advanced Technology Group. "For example, students and teachers would no longer
be confined to a rigid classroom set-up.  Instead, computing and
communications--and therefore learning--could happen any place. Users in the
workplace would enjoy similar advantages.  Employees would be liberated from
the constraints of physical networks, which would enhance creativity and
personal productivity," Nagel said.

This type of "spontaneous" or "ad hoc" local area networking would supplement
today's wired network configurations, which typically consist of telephone
lines, coaxial cables, and fiber optics.  The cost, particularly the capital
cost, of hardwiring a building is high and then users are restricted as to
when, how and where they can use their computers to move data.

Apple recognizes that radio spectrum is scarce and in high demand.  Considering
this, along with the intense activity being focused on proposals for new voice
communications services, Apple is requesting that the FCC move quickly in
giving equitable consideration to data communication when determining future
bandwidth allocations.

"We're urging the public to support Apple's appeal that the allocation of radio
spectrum go beyond voice communications to include an appropriate emphasis on
data communications," Sculley said. "Our hope is that computer users will view
the allocation of the radio spectrum for wireless computing as Apple does--as
an important step in advancing the future of personal computing technology."

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