| Cult of Mac

Net neutrality might return when controversial FCC chairman resigns


FCC chairman Ajit Pai isn’t down with China Mobile coming to the United States.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is on his way out, which possibly might bring back net neutrality.
Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr CC

The man who ended net neutrality will exit the Federal Communications Commission along with the Trump administration in January. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai was in office for less than four years, but brought significant change.

No change was as dramatic as ending the rules that prevented broadband service providers from slowing down the internet traffic of rival companies.

FCC boosts Wi-Fi speeds by opening 6 GHz spectrum


6 GHz Wi-Fi is coming to many devices. Eventually.
Lots of computers in a small space is a scenario where 6 GHz Wi-Fi is expected to shine.
Photo: Pixels CC

The FCC on Thursday approved an expansion of Wi-Fi to the 6GHz band. This adds almost five times the bandwidth to the short-range wireless networking standard. It should bring Wi-Fi connections that are up to 2.5 times faster, with less interference from nearby computers.

Thursday’s FCC vote on this expansion was unanimous, and the change has strong industry support.

2020 Powerbeats Pro may have scored FCC approval


This might be the 2020 Powerbeats Pro next to the 2019 one
2020 Powerbeats Pro look familiar in FCC filings.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Apple got approval to release a pair of “totally wireless high-performance earphones” from the Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday. But the company didn’t release this product, so exactly what they’ll offer is a mystery.

That said, information buried in the FCC filing shows these will be very similar to last year’s Powerbeats Pro. They might be the successor.

FCC eyes boosting Wi-Fi speeds by opening 6GHz spectrum


home Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi over the 6GHz spectrum, if approved, could offer up to 2Gbps wireless connections.
Photo: Alan Levine/Flickr

The FCC will vote April 23 on a proposal to expand Wi-Fi to the 6GHz band. If approved, the move would add almost five times the bandwidth to the short-range wireless networking standard used by MacBooks, iPads, and virtually every other mobile device. That could bring faster Wi-Fi connections, with less interference from nearby computers.

FCC forces carriers to crack down on fake caller IDs


Spam call
The FCC ordered phone companies to block calls made with fake caller ID info.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

The FCC on Tuesday gave wireless carriers until next summer to implement a system designed to prevent caller ID spoofing. The goal is blocking phone scammers from using fake caller ID information to convince call recipients that they are talking to someone trustworthy or from their local area.

FCC plans to hit U.S. cellphone carriers with massive fines


All the major carriers are about to get fined.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

America’s largest cellphone carriers are about to get hit with hundreds of millions of dollars in fines from the Federal Communications Commission according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Officials at the FCC found the companies broke the law by selling customers’ location data to third parties and are prepared to make AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint pay big time. The companies have reportedly been notified that fines could be on the way.

Judge slams ‘dumb’ FCC in iPhone radiation lawsuit; case moves to trial


The FCC is currently shut down.
A California judge whacks the FCC with a ruler over its testing standards for radiofrequency radiation, but says the case will continue.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

U.S. District Judge William Alsup allowed a proposed class-action lawsuit against Apple over allegedly exposing iPhone owners to high levels of radiofrequency radiation to move forward Thursday. However, the judge also blasted the Federal Communications Commission for its “dumb” testing standards.

Take a sneak peek at a rack-mounted Mac Pro


The rack-mounted version of the Mac Pro as seen in Apple's FCC filing.
IT managers can drool over the rack-mountable version of the Mac Pro.
Photo: Apple/FCC

Not every model of the uber-powerful new Mac Pro will sit under someone’s desk. The appearance of the “cheese grater” Mac attracted so much attention that people might want to see what the version designed for rack-mounting looks like.