As technology evolves, with it comes change. Sometimes it is a little upgrade, but sometimes it is a complete system overhaul. Either can be especially daunting when it comes to public wireless telecommunications networks since the decommissioning process must be performed by experts and tracked for compliance to ensure systems remain secure, networks are not disrupted, and overall integrity remains intact. Destruction and disposal of decommissioned equipment is another critical priority. Any data that has been saved, stored, or transferred through these telecom devices is required to be eliminated to prevent uncleared entities access to the network.
This is especially relevant when network equipment is deemed obsolete by nature of its origin and manufacturer. In June 2020, the FCC officially designated Huawei and ZTE and their subsidiary companies as national security threats, accusing the companies of having divisive ties to the Chinese government and its military. Their equipment was in use by many of our nations’ wireless telecommunications networks, so the government has called for decommissioning and replacement of these components immediately. Consequently, Congress approved funding for qualifying carriers to assist the rip and replacement of the associated equipment. A substantial portion of The Rural Wireless Association’s membership was affected.
In recent years, the experts at Teltech Group developed a tool that simplifies the decommissioning process known as TAM (Teltech Asset Management). It recently was reintroduced as “TAM 2.0” with a refreshed interface and additional functionality. Using Bluetooth technology and a user-friendly interface complimented by a mobile app, this tool provides the means to track and document the decommissioning journey from initiation to completion and is fully supported by Teltech on the back end. Teltech even has in-house recycling and refurbishment services so is uniquely positioned to complete the process without hand off to another third party to dispose or re-use equipment properly, according to federal guidelines. TAM 2.0 is scalable, repeatable, and secure while providing thorough documentation including images, the ideal solution for rip and replace projects.
Certainly, technology will still evolve, and carriers will bring next generation technologies to these same underserved rural communities. Teltech remains uniquely positioned to support these transitions, small or large-scale, with proven simple, automated end-to-end asset management whether for failure, excess, decommissioning or harvesting.