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If your product is subject to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations, it needs to display certain information using a label, etching or digital display. This information confirms that your device complies with regulations and provides information to consumers and end users.
The FCC has strict labeling requirements, and it’s important to follow them closely to make sure your device is compliant.
Below, we’ve explained what the FCC’s requirements for labeling and device packaging are, as well as how you can make sure your device complies with these rules.
What Are FCC Labeling Requirements?
The FCC requires all manufacturers of products transmitting radiofrequency energy (RF) to put a certification identification (FCC ID) on their device. The FCC ID can be labeled on the product, etched on the exterior of the product, or electronically displayed.
By law, any product’s FCC ID needs to be visible and located in a font that can be read without magnification.
If your product is subject to FCC regulations, it’s important to make sure you’re fully compliant with all labeling requirements. Failing to label your product correctly could result in action from the FCC, including fines and limitations on your ability to market your product.
As experts in FCC testing and compliance, we can make sure you achieve compliance with all FCC regulations, including regarding product labeling.
You can contact our team online, call us on 866-540-5287, or continue reading to learn more about FCC requirements for labeling and device packaging.
How To Label Different Products With FCC ID
The FCC has clear requirements for product labeling that can vary based on the type of device you are bringing to market. Typically, devices that are subject to FCC labeling requirements will need to display the following information:
FCC logo. This logo, or FCC mark, indicates that a device has been subject to testing and complies with FCC regulations.
FCC ID. This is an identification number that’s assigned to the device by the FCC. Each compliant device is given a unique ID number that lets people access information about the device using the FCC’s online database.
Some electrical devices may also need to have a Statement of Compliance with FCC Part 15C — a part of the FCC regulations governing radio frequency devices.
The FCC requires that product labels are placed on the device so that the information is readily visible at the time of purchase. FCC labeling requirements differ between devices that use approved transmitters (or “modules”) and devices that use unapproved transmitters.
Products With Approved Transmitter (Module)
Some transmitters are certified by the FCC as modules. A module has already been tested and approved by the FCC, allowing it to be used in devices without the need for each device to pass through separate testing, provided each device meets certain conditions.
These conditions include that the module is used in a manner consistent with its approval by the FCC.
If your device uses an approved transmitter module, FCC rules state that it needs to be labeled with the FCC ID of the module.
Products With Unapproved Transmitter
If your device uses a transmitter that has not been certified by the FCC as a module, the entire device needs to complete the FCC certification process.
This process involves carrying out FCC testing to make sure your device meets FCC limits for radio frequency (RF) emissions and electromagnetic interference (EMI).
Once your device receives FCC certification, it will receive a grant of equipment authorization and a unique FCC ID. Your electronic/digital device must then be labeled with its FCC ID in a visible exterior location.
Use Of FCC Symbol During Labeling
The FCC requires that labeling must be evaluated and affixed. For you to use the FCC symbol as shown in FCC 15.19(b), the device should qualify for a Supplier’s Declaration of Conformity (SDoC).
If your device doesn’t qualify for a Declaration of Conformity, you are not permitted to apply the FCC mark to your device.
Ideally, the following is additional information to keep in mind when it comes to FCC symbols:
Devices that require both certification and Supplier’s Declaration of Conformity (SDoC) must receive two marks of conformity: the FCC symbol and the certification number.
Devices requiring certification or SDoC should only get a single mark of conformity as selected by the manufacturer.
Can You Put FCC Labels on the Manual Instead of the Product?
A common misconception among manufacturers is that small devices can display their FCC ID in the manual instead of on the product itself.
Most devices are required to display the FCC mark, FCC ID and other relevant information in a visible location on the device itself.
However, in certain cases, you may be able to show the FCC logo and ID number as part of an internal compartment in your product, or as part of an e-Label (electronic label).
If your product is too small to display the FCC ID on its exterior, you may be able to display this information in a device compartment. Your manual may provide information about how the user can find this information. However, you cannot include the FCC ID solely in the user manual.
If your product has a digital display, you may be able to include the FCC ID and other required information as part of its software interface. The FCC provides electronic labeling guidance for devices such as smartphones, e-readers, computers and other electronics via its website.
E-labeling may also be available for devices that display content via a connection to a display, such as a streaming device or game console.
Do IoT Products Need to Comply With FCC Labeling Requirements?
Any device connecting wirelessly to the internet, such as a home security system, smart coffee machine, or fitness tracker, needs to comply with country-specific equipment labeling rules.
In the United States, all IoT devices must meet the authorization and labeling requirements of the FCC to be allowed onto the market.
Consequences Of Failing To Label Your Device
Failing to label your device subject to the FCC’s rules could result in a variety of consequences, including financial penalties and legal action from the FCC, including recalling your device from the market.
This means that you may not be able to legally sell, market or display your product to customers until it’s improved to comply with FCC regulations.
The cost of failing to label your device properly can be significant, making it important to ensure your product is in full compliance with FCC rules before you enter the market.
Contact Us About FCC Testing, Labeling & Compliance
As an accredited testing lab, we’ve helped hundreds of manufacturers complete testing for their products and achieve FCC compliance. Our team can help you with every aspect of the testing and FCC compliance process, including complying with labeling requirements.
Contact our team online or call us on 866-540-5287 to ask a question, request a quote for testng your device, or find out more about the FCC compliance process.
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