3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Teacher

3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Based on the numerous threads here, it's obvious a lot of folks have had issues getting their 3G MicroCell activated using their home address.  The MicroCell relies on your address and your GPS coordinates for two key geolocation checks at activation, one to make sure that AT&T has licenses for wireless spectrum where you are and the other to make sure AT&T has the proper infrastructure in place to support E911 routing in your area.

 

It would be very unlikely that AT&T would not have spectrum, so when any of us are running into activation issues, it's almost always due to one of two things: either AT&T has not yet coordinated with your local 911 Dispatch, or they have and your current and correct address is not in the third-party database they use.

 

I know a lot of folks on here recommend that you use a nearby address.  I actually had an AT&T representative suggest the same, and that was how our 3G MicroCell was running for several weeks.  This is not how it is supposed to be.

 

AT&T has a procedure in place to have your address added or updated in their E911 database.  You, I, and everybody else here knows it's nearly impossible to get that done, but it is possible and you should make sure it is done.  You never know when, heaven forbid, you might have dial 911.  The last thing you want is to end up waiting, wasting precious minutes, while emergency responders are dispatched to the wrong address.  Call 3G MicroCell support back and tell them a ticket needs to be put in to have your address added to the database.  It should take no more than a week.  If you can't get someone to help, call AT&T's executive response team:

 

Eastern States 877-707-6220

Western States 800-498-1912

 

I've tried my best to make them aware of this problem, and of the fact that these issues are affecting a lot of MicroCell customers.  They don't seem to be willing or able to address it systemically, so until they get their act together — or until they're forced to get their act together by some regulatory body (more likely), you'll probably have to fight case by case.  I realize the AT&T bureaucracy can be maddening and overwhelming, but this is one time you really ought to make sure you get AT&T to follow through.  Good luck.

 

(Last but not least, if you have or haven't had success in getting your address added or updated, if you'd be willing to share your progress here, it might be helpful for others...)

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Message 1 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

I bought a 3G MicroCell tower (actually 2) last month and activated the first near my home in the twin cities.  I then took it up to my home along the north shore and low and behold it doesn't activate (I changed the address to the CORRECT address up north before activating it).  When I called AT&T customer support the young lady was kind enough to give me the GPS address of the Address the 3G Microcell tower was reporting it was at, and its 6 miles south of my actual address.  When I told AT&T this, they told me that the 3G microcell tower wasn't locking onto my signal (its placed in a window with absolutely no obstruction of the sky.) The light on the hardware is SOLID saying it is locked in.  In fact i moved it to several different locations and the GPS location never changed according to AT&T).  The problem is that its reporting I am located in one place when I am clearly not.  It begins to get REALLY interesting when I pull my iPhone 4 out and it's GPS lock is within 3 feet of where I am! CLEARLY the 3G microcell tower has issues regarding GPS.  I can't even register it at the "fake" location because there are no street addresses where it thinks I am! AT&T was ABSOLUTELY no help beyond telling me that I can pay $50 for a troubleshooter to help me fix it.  I just paid $300 to AT&T for two of these, not to mention upgrading my account to unlimited minutes. I am very frustrated.

Message 2 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Does the activation site give you any error message?  I'd recommend calling AT&T back.  Request that a ticket be put in to resolve the mismatched address issue.  I've never heard of there being a $50 fee for "troubleshooting," that sounds quite strange.  Try 888 334-3787 and enter PIN 88346.  If you don't have any luck with the first representative you speak with, ask for a supervisor.

Message 3 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Yup, it gives me an error 102.  The AT&T representative (the 6th one I've talked to) today says that the reason it is errors out has nothing to do with the 3g micro-cell tower - it has to do with my internet provider. She said that my internet provider has the incorrect location for me programmed into my system so that when AT&T tries to determine the address by the cell towers and the internet connection it is pulling up 6 miles south of where I am located.  She said that unless my internet provider can update the address that the 3G micro-cell will not work.  I find it odd that my iphone gets the correct address, yet their 3g micro-cell relies on your internet provider.... Basically every time I call them I get another story about why its not working.

 

P.S. The PIN code you gave me is no longer valid, its directing people back to the 800-331-0500 and regular tech support. sigh

Message 4 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Btw, the service they are trying to get me to use is called CONNECT TECH, costs $50 and they do not guarantee that it will fix the problem. Basically they walk you thru all of the networking issues (router, firewalls, etc).  So much for being a loyal AT&T customer, spending $300 on two of these, getting unlimited minutes on all of my numbers. They simply don't care, can't address or even troubleshoot what the actual problem is and are flat out dishonest about it (I have caught the reps several times telling me things that contradict everything I've read - for instance, one told me that my internet provider reported issues in my area (My internet provider said this wasn't true)).

Message 5 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Interesting, the PIN was working just yesterday.  I guess they got tired of all the calls regarding outages?  In any event, I guess you'll have to call the 800-331-0500 and insist on being transferred to MicroCell support.  (In my experience, the basic customer service and technical support folks are not very familiar with MicroCell and tend to have wildly inaccurate information.)  The representative you were speaking with was definitely misinformed, the MicroCell does not use ISP-based geolocation information, it relies on GPS.  Keep escalating your issue until it's resolved.  If you don't have any luck, try the executive numbers listed in the first post above.

Message 6 of 27
Guru

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

 


 She said that my internet provider has the incorrect location for me programmed into my system so that when AT&T tries to determine the address by the cell towers and the internet connection it is pulling up 6 miles south of where I am located.  She said that unless my internet provider can update the address that the 3G micro-cell will not work. 


 

I can assure you that that is make-believe.

 

ISPs don't have a thing to do with geolocation. Your ISP has no idea what the geographic location of your stuff is. They know where to send you a bill, but not only is that not necessarily the same place, but it's nothing to do with the systems that have anything to do with Internet connectivity.

 

No.

 

There are service companies out there that can translate postal address into lon/lat coordinates. They do this with varying levels of accuracy and/or completeness. The one AT&T has selected has translated your address into a lon/lat that they expect your Microcell to show up at. Your Microcell is using GPS to determine its location and reporting what it finds back in. Those two numbers do not agree. AT&T's systems reject this because the most likely explanation is that someone has activated their microcell at the wrong location (for varying reasons, not all of which are honest), and AT&T must brick the thing.

 

There ARE databases our there that can attempt to geolocate by IP address. They tend to be wildly inaccurate and incomplete (our house tends to be put in Hayward, which is sort of the center of SBC's territory), but there is absolutely no reason why AT&T would ever need to consult one of those - they can securely determine the GPS location of the microcell, and they know the postal address of where it's SUPPOSED to be and they can geolocate those with far better accuracy and determinism.

It is almost guaranteed that the Microcell is reporting the correct location and that AT&T's geolocation database (by extension, the database of their subcontractor) is wrong.

 

If you get any other explanation from anybody, I guarantee you they are either mistaken or lying.

 

This is what kills me about AT&T. Things that are so dead simple a four year old could understand them wind up being given a dozen different explanations by everyone you talk to.

Message 7 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Thanks to you both for responding back.  I will continue to work on getting AT&T to fix this and post back the results.  It's absolutely incomprehensible that NO ONE at AT&T can figure this out without me having to spend another $50 for them to fix what's obviously broken on their end.

Message 8 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

This is just a re-post of what I wrote on another thread. I am STILL battling at&t on this issue... but this is what I've learned (mostly from other people and not at&t reps)

 

1) AT&T uses a GPS coordinate for the address you supply that is stored in their E-911 Database that is populated from both an ALI (Automatic Location Identification) database and an MSAG (Master Street Address Guide) database.

 

2) A *LOT* of addresses in AT&T's database use the GPS coordinates for the PSAP (local 911 call center) instead of the actual gps coordinates. I have no idea why this is other than possibly guessing when the database was created if they had an address that didn't have corresponding gps coordinates they were simply lazy and used the PSAP coordinates assuming that people at the PSAP would know where your home address was located.  For a large percentage of customers (those in urban areas) this doesn't present a problem because your micro-cell tower is within the 5,000 meter radius that AT&T uses to establish a match.  If you are over 5,000 meters it causes the error 102 mismatch that reports back "The registered address does not match the actual device location."

 

3) No matter how much you argue with the AT&T representative, they won't listen and keep insisting it has something to do with your internet connection.  The fact is, if you are getting a solid green light on your internet connection, you are good to go.  That indicates that your micro-cell tower is properly talking to AT&T.  If for some reason you weren't that light would blink.  Another telling sign is that the rep will be able to see the box and the gps coordinates it is reporting! If you didn't have an internet connection that worked, they wouldn't see that information.

 

So given that you are in my position, your only option is to INSIST they open up a case so that someone updates their E-911 database with the CORRECT gps coordinates of your home address.  No one their seems to know how to do it (at least at lower levels), and so far I am on my second attempt at getting them to do this.  

 

AT&T needs to be aware that by not updating these records when a customer tells them they are violating both state and federal laws. E-911 records are important enough that they need to be correct.  I hope this helps someone avoid spending the time and energy I have!

Message 9 of 27
Scholar

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections


vfxbear wrote:

  For a large percentage of customers (those in urban areas) this doesn't present a problem because your micro-cell tower is within the 5,000 meter radius that AT&T uses to establish a match.  If you are over 5,000 meters it causes the error 102 mismatch that reports back "The registered address does not match the actual device location."


I'm in a very rural area here in Northwestern California (Redwood Valley, Mendocino County) and am over 10 miles from my 911 center(Ukiah, CA) and it found me fine.

Message 10 of 27
Voyager

Re: G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Well I come posting this after reading and have been facing the same problem since Sept. 9th . Have 3 Solid Lights and 1 Blinking 3 g light . I live in WV and there is no such thing as advanced 911 System YET . I have spoke to My 911 center they told me some time in the next couple Months this will take effect.

I have spoke to Customer Support Since the 9th and They keep telling me they have it fixed , disconnect and reinstall again and again. As we speak I am calling them once again. I could care less that it has my correct 911 address I still have my land line and not going to remove it. Really can't be that hard to remove any locks to prevent this from happening.

I guess I type this to rant and rave. Can it really be that hard to to fix this problem I have been working on PC and Network stuff for a few yrs , Maybe just long enough to be dangerous

 

Any suggestions on how or who to speak to to get the Micro cell tower to work.

 

 My setup is a Westell Model 7500 Hooked up on port 1 with Option 1 Hook up , I turned on DMZ hosting to keep any interference from my modem / router

Message 11 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Calif,

 

Thats 5,000 Meters from the expected Gps Coordinates of the address you provided.  Most likely AT&T's database has correct gps coordinates to your address.  Im guessing that when their database was created if they didnt they simply put in the gps coordinates for the nearest 911 dispatch center, at least thats the way it appears to me.  I wish I was as lucky as you! Smiley Happy  So far no one from AT&T has called me back or attempted to fix the database error, but I have until the 27th to complain since that was the date set to have this issue resolved by.

Message 12 of 27
Teacher

Re: G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Wvsnowman,

 

I can sympathize - you are going thru EXACTLY what I am.  The issue is the database that they use has incorrect gps coordinates to the home address you are using to register it and the only way to fix that is to have someone at at&t get off their butt and update the database.  For at&t to say they can't or won't is inexcusable and frankly illegal. 

 

Trust me when I say if you have a solid internet light that your internet connection is *NOT* the issue, if the only light that keeps blinking is the 3g light its obvious an address mismatch.  If you have verified that the address you submitted was correct it's an AT&T problem.

Message 13 of 27
Scholar

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections


vfxbear wrote:

Calif,

 

Thats 5,000 Meters from the expected Gps Coordinates of the address you provided.  Most likely AT&T's database has correct gps coordinates to your address.  Im guessing that when their database was created if they didnt they simply put in the gps coordinates for the nearest 911 dispatch center, at least thats the way it appears to me.  I wish I was as lucky as you! Smiley Happy  So far no one from AT&T has called me back or attempted to fix the database error, but I have until the 27th to complain since that was the date set to have this issue resolved by.


Ahh, okay, thanks for the info!  Good luck in your quest, I hope they get this fixed for you asap!

Message 14 of 27
Teacher

Re: 3G MicroCell activation, E911 address corrections

Thanks for the help everyone! After 3+ weeks of trying to resolve this AT&T *FINALLY* fixed the problem. The 3G micro-cell is up and running (so far perfectly).  The only issue is that AT&T told me they DISABLED the gps locking on my account. They did nothing to their E911 database.  

Message 15 of 27
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