National Emergency Alert Test on DISH

Discussion in 'General DISH™ Discussion' started by GoLongAndChopChop881, Oct 3, 2018.

  1. Oct 3, 2018 #1 of 15
    GoLongAndChopChop881

    GoLongAndChopChop881 Member

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    Ever heard of the latest Emergency Alert System Test? This will affect DISH.
     
  2. Oct 3, 2018 #2 of 15
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Interesting. I'm glad someone caught a clean video of the event. I was at work watching via a local cable system when the alert was eventually relayed (received via a local radio station that serves as the primary EAS station for the area). I cannot remember the exact time the cable system relayed the message but it was around 20 minutes later.

    It looks like DISH relayed the message promptly. TV and radio were expected to get the message at 2:20pm, just after the cell phone alerts at 2:18pm. I was in a room with seven cell phones and they all alerted simultaneously.
     
  3. Oct 3, 2018 #3 of 15
    scooper

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    I guess even flipphones reacted to the alert ... the meeting I was in had some of those going off as well...
     
  4. Oct 3, 2018 #4 of 15
    AntAltMike

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    I tuned to 640 AM and 1240 AM, but only got white noise.
     
  5. Oct 3, 2018 #5 of 15
    Nick

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    Thankfully, no alerts on the two flip-phones in my house.
     
  6. Oct 3, 2018 #6 of 15
    KyL416

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    Needing to switch to 640 AM or 1240 AM hasn't been a thing since CONELRAD was replaced by the EBS in 1963. By that point air nav technology improved so instead of potentially confusing attacks that were homing in on a signal, the only thing rapidly switching frequencies accomplished was shortening the life of the AM station's transmitter, especially in the pre-solid state era.

    It depends on the model and how old it is. More recent flip phones were designed to recieve the alerts and many of them are now running minimal versions of a smartphone OS with a simple interface.

    And for smartphones, if you are running an alternative OS like LineageOS, imported an international model or originally purchased your phone for another carrier than the one you are using, the alerts likely didn't happen either. (i.e. Samsung's Androids have the alert coded in the carrier customization, so if you originally purchased a T-Mobile phone, and unlocked it to use it with AT&T you wouldn't get the alert.)
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2018
  7. Oct 4, 2018 #7 of 15
    AntAltMike

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    Do those phones have text screens on them? I was wondering what happens if someone attempts to send a text message to a phone that has no text capability. Does the sender get a bounce indication?
     
  8. Oct 4, 2018 #8 of 15
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I cannot remember the last cell phone I had that did not have text messaging (probably the Motorola bag phone?).
     
  9. Oct 4, 2018 #9 of 15
    n0qcu

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    Unless things have changed that would be no. I have had my phone send text message to a persons POTS number instead of their wireless number in the past.
     
  10. KyL416

    KyL416 Hall Of Fame

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    Also, now that the analog networks have been shutdown, and many providers are eliminating 2G service, the chances of having a functioning cell phone without SMS support are slim to none. Now, MMS is another story, in that case depending on your carrier, you either don't get anything at all, just the text portion of the message, or text surrounded by a bunch of code.

    And emergency alerts are not the same thing as SMS, so contrary to what the media hype was claiming, no you were not getting a text message sent to your personal phone number. It's a seperate Wireless Emergency Alerts (CMAS) system using cell broadcast technology that's sent out to every phone configured to receive them, the same system that sends out AMBER and Severe Weather alerts, except those are localized to phones connected to cell signals in the area covered by those alerts. The thing is your phone has to be configured to support those alerts, so older phones and international models won't get them, and like I mentioned before, on some phones like Samsung, it's something configured in the CSC (carrier customization), so if you switched carriers, your phone would still have the code for your previous carrier in the "CscFeature_Message_CMASOperator" value:
    AT&T: us-att-lte or us-att-3g for non-LTE models
    T-Mobile: us-tmo
    Verizon: us-vzw
    Sprint: us-spr
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018
  11. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Verizon is shutting down 3G at the end of 2019. They have already passed the point where one can activate a non-4G device. The older technologies have been left in the dust.

    Didn't get the Presidential Alert? This is why, according to FEMA
    In a statement, FEMA said cellphones compatible with the Wireless Emergency Alerts system that are turned on and within range of an active cell tower were capable of getting the message.

    "Additionally, if a user is on a call, or with an active data session open on their phone, they might not have received the message," FEMA said.

    FEMA is encouraging the public to send comments on the test to FEMA-National-Test@fema.dhs.gov. Among the details people who did not get the alert should send: What device they use, their wireless provider, whether they were using their phone when the alert went out, and whether others nearby received the alert.



    With that in mind, a text message may be more reliable than the alert system. Text messages are sent whenever there is connectivity between the device and the system. (Back in the bad old analog days I considered text messaging to be more reliable than voice. All one needed was a couple of seconds of coverage to get a text message through instead of sustained coverage for a phone call. Even now during high call volume events text messaging gets through when calls are blocked.)

    If receiving a FEMA alert requires the phone to be on and available at the moment the message is sent that is unreliable. In my opinion, the message should be in the stream until it expires so all the intended recipients get the message.
     
  12. KyL416

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    It actually was in the system for at least an hour. People on social media reported that they tried to turn their phones off to avoid it, only to get it when they turned their phone back on an hour later.

    The alert system doesn't even have to rely on people having active accounts. Like my tablet has an AT&T Prepaid SIM card for data only that hasn't been filled since June and has been empty since July. When I turned it on half an hour after the test, I got the alert on it, and it also gets the Amber and severe weather alerts.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018
  13. NYDutch

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    I tested two inactive phones as well as one active one. One of the inactive phones was powered on and the other was not. Neither phone has phone number associated with it any longer. The active phone received the alert as expected, and so did the inactive phone that was on. The powered off inactive phone did not get the alert when powered on shortly after the event.
     
  14. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    That is good. Seeing some of the "I didn't get it" reports I wondered why they were missed. Perhaps "airplane mode"?
     
  15. KyL416

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    It really varies, it could be anything from airplane mode, having an international model that isn't configured for CMAS, running a 3rd party OS like LineageOS/CyanogenMod, in the case of Samsung, and possibly some others, using an unlocked phone from a different carrier than you are using now.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018

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