FCC Seeks Comment on Petitions for Waiver of June 30, 2020, Deadline to Support Real-Time Text on IP- Based Networks

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The Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau (CGB) seeks comment on three petitions from non-tier I mobile service providers requesting waivers of the deadline for such providers to support real-time text (RTT). In December of 2016, the FCC began the transition from text telephone (TTY) technology to RTT, allowing mobile service providers to support RTT in lieu of TTY technology for IP-based services. Service providers that opt to transition from TTY to RTT over wireless IP-enabled networks must meet certain requirements by June 30, 2020. The Competitive Carriers Association (CCA), on behalf of six members, and East Kentucky Network dba Appalachian Wireless both request a temporary waiver of the deadline, or alternatively, a ruling that compliance with the accessibility requirements is not readily achievable by the deadline. Both parties recommend that the FCC extend the waiver to one year after the date the provider executes a contract with a network vendor for installation and deployment of RTT. US Cellular seeks an extension of the deadline to December 31, 2020. Comments are due on the petitions by July 31, 2020, and reply comments are due by August 17, 2020.

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