T-Mobile couldn’t meet public safety requirement
By ATFN Staff
On April 8, 2020 the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that T-Mobile could not meet the public safety requirements that were established in a Request for Qualification (RFQ) that was issued by Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency which is an independent Federal entity. This RFQ for cellular services had as a requirement “enhanced priority-type features” which the agency identified as “AT&T FirstNet or equal”. T-Mobile challenged that the RFQ failed to “clearly identify the salient characteristic for the brand name item (FirstNet) and that requirements for a private network with priority and pre-emptive capabilities are unduly restrictive”.
The GAO concluded that the agency has shown that the restrictive specifications are reasonably necessary to meet its legitimate need and they denied the protest in a letter issue in early April. In the report T-Mobile admits, “FirstNet has the capability to perform vital prioritization and pre-emption services to ensure that first responders have network access when those networks might otherwise be overloaded and inaccessible”. FirstNet Built with AT&T was awarded the contract and according to the GAO report one other vendor submitted a proposal and was not selected.
For more information on the report … https://www.gao.gov/assets/710/706311.pdf