By Bill Dale, Allied Mailing Solutions of Michigan December 7, 2005 -- Mailing industry providers as well as the providers of postage metering solutions understands that you want "choices" when it comes to selecting the replacement equipment for the postage meters that work on your inserter equipment that has been mandated off the market by December 31, 2006 by the U.S. Postal Service. First of all, rest assured that the Postal Service is not going to react irrationally on that date which effects the majority of the inserter customers. Secondly, its unlikely the USPS will allow any manufacturer to refuse to reset any postage meter for customers who waiting for their "new" replacement postage meter to be installed. It is important that every mail inserter customer remain calm and rational. It is important that every mail inserter customer remain calm and rational. We know that as of November 2005 there is only one provider that has approved, IBI postage meters available. However, that same provider has a phase 4 postage meter available that will fit some of your equipment, can be placed now and used until December 31, 2008. While the B900 postage meter is not the perfect meter for some inserter equipment, It could "buy you time" to make a better choice. When in doubt, wait, do nothing, until you have had a chance to explore all of your possible options. Rest assured that there are other companies developing digital IBI postage meters that will give you choices in the very near future. You have until December 31, 2006 to make your decision. As long as you have signed a contract to replace your postage metering equipment by December 31, 2006, the U.S. Postal Service is not going to shut you down nor will they stand by and allow anyone else to interrupt their best revenue source you, the Production Mailers. When in doubt, wait, do nothing, until you have had a chance to explore all of your possible options. We are not saying you don't have to update your metering systems to digital IBI meters, but you have options to get to the final date of December 31, 2008. If you do not fully understand your options you should contact your USPS account representative and demand the real facts. You can also find a copy of the Federal Register listing the time lines and which meter manufacturer meters are effected when at www.usps.com/postagesolutions . When you reach this page, click on "Postage Meters" then go to the bottom of the "Postage Meter" page and click on "More about Postage Technology". At the bottom of this page click on "Federal Register Notices". You are looking for Federal Register Notice 16292 Mach 29, 2004. This notice will refer you to earlier notices. Also, while you are on the "Postage Meters" page check out the link "Industry News". You will find the listing of all Phase 3 and Phase 4 meters by Manufacturer.