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Old April 17 2010, 05:03 AM   #1
Rii
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Israel bans iPad

... or at least imports thereof from America.

Haaretz
The Communications Ministry announced Tuesday that it was imposing a blanket ban on the import of Apple's new tablet computer, the iPad, citing incompatibility with the European Wi-Fi standard, which is used in Israel. For this reason, several such computers have been confiscated by customs officials at Ben-Gurion Airport. Eden Bar Tal, director of the Communications Ministry, defends the ban.

The public is angry following your ban on importing the iPad. Why didn't you announce this earlier? The ban was only revealed when several of the devices were confiscated by customs officials.

The ministry does not deal in brands and packaging. In this case, customs identified the import of a wireless device, and it had to determine whether it was appropriate for Israel. It's true that there is something exotic about the name iPad, but this changes nothing. The goal is that all citizens enjoy the use of wireless networks in this country; importation of a device which is not suited to local standards is likely to cause them harm. Apple itself decided to postpone the release of the iPad into international markets. These are Apple's business decisions and not ours. We are concerned with one thing only: that no wireless technology will trample the wireless connections of other users. If the iPad meets the standards set in Europe, everyone will be able to enjoy them, and we won't be forced to block their entry.
Anyone want to explain this for technological neophytes such as I? I was under the impression that WiFi is an IEEE standard and that as such products adhering to that standard would be interoperable regardless of their region of origin?
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Old April 17 2010, 06:39 AM   #2
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Re: Israel bans iPad

The same thing happened in Israel with the iPhone launch; iPhones just became available there this past December. But as I understand it, the iPad hasn't been passed through the European certification process yet and their rules on WiFi devices are slightly different from FCC rules (and Israel appears to conform to the European rules). So until it's officially passed, they're banning it from import.

It isn't that unreasonable, they're just being a bit heavy handed. In any case, when the iPad launches internationally next month (currently it's only for sale in the US) the issue will most likely be cleared up.
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Old April 17 2010, 08:13 AM   #3
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Re: Israel bans iPad

Seems like a great way for immigration officials to get hold of the latest tech toys.
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Old April 17 2010, 09:27 AM   #4
Rii
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Re: Israel bans iPad

The article seems to imply that the issue is a technical one, not merely that the device hasn't yet been certified by the relevant European agencies. Of course it's always a mistake to place too much emphasis upon exact wording in non-specialist media...

Great Mambo Chicken wrote: View Post
Seems like a great way for immigration officials to get hold of the latest tech toys.
Such appalling cynicism!
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Old April 17 2010, 09:55 AM   #5
Rii
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Re: Israel bans iPad

This looks promising.

Wikipedia on IEEE 802.11
802.11 divides each of the above-described bands into channels, analogously to how radio and TV broadcast bands are sub-divided but with greater channel width and overlap. For example the 2.4000–2.4835 GHz band is divided into 13 channels each of width 22 MHz but spaced only 5 MHz apart, with channel 1 centered on 2.412 GHz and 13 on 2.472 GHz to which Japan adds a 14th channel 12 MHz above channel 13.

Availability of channels is regulated by country, constrained in part by how each country allocates radio spectrum to various services. At one extreme, Japan permits the use of all 14 channels (with the exclusion of 802.11g/n from channel 14), while at the other Spain initially allowed only channels 10 and 11 and France allowed only 10, 11, 12 and 13 (now both countries follow the European model of allowing channels 1 through 13[11][12]). Most other European countries are almost as liberal as Japan, disallowing only channel 14, while North America and some Central and South American countries further disallow 12 and 13. For more details on this topic, see List of WLAN channels.

Besides specifying the centre frequency of each channel, 802.11 also specifies (in Clause 17) a spectral mask defining the permitted distribution of power across each channel. The mask requires that the signal be attenuated by at least 30 dB from its peak energy at ±11 MHz from the centre frequency, the sense in which channels are effectively 22 MHz wide. One consequence is that stations can only use every fourth or fifth channel without overlap, typically 1, 6 and 11 in the Americas, and in theory, 1, 5, 9 and 13 in Europe although 1, 6, and 11 is typical there too. Another is that channels 1-13 effectively require the band 2.401–2.483 GHz, the actual allocations being, for example, 2.400–2.4835 GHz in the UK, 2.402–2.4735 GHz in the US, etc.

Since the spectral mask only defines power output restrictions up to ±11 MHz from the center frequency to be attenuated by -50 dBr, it is often assumed that the energy of the channel extends no further than these limits. It is more correct to say that, given the separation between channels 1, 6, and 11, the signal on any channel should be sufficiently attenuated to minimally interfere with a transmitter on any other channel.
It sounds like Israel enforces EU channel allocation standards more stringently than EU members do.
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Old April 27 2010, 05:10 AM   #6
Mr. Laser Beam
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Re: Israel bans iPad

The ban has since been lifted.

Don't know how those who have already had iPads confiscated would go about getting them back, though.
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Old April 27 2010, 07:16 AM   #7
SilentP
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Re: Israel bans iPad

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
The ban has since been lifted.

Don't know how those who have already had iPads confiscated would go about getting them back, though.
One would assume (or rather hope) there would have been paperwork associated with each of the specific confiscations and thusly have the identity of the owner and contact details, rather than an official going *yoink* 'Mine now!' when taking it off them.
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