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NY K84538

April 9, 2004
CLA-2-85:RR:NC:MM:109 K84538


TARIFF NO.: 8517.50.9000

Mr. Ron Johan
Managing Director
UHS Systems Pty Ltd
Unit 8, 538 Gardeners Rd
Mascot NSW 2020

RE: The tariff classification of a wall-mounted Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) modem from Australia

Dear Mr. Johan:

In your letter dated March 9, 2004, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise is described in your ruling as a wall-mounted Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) modem. The product description refers to this item as an UltraSec ADSL Gateway.

Attached to your ruling request was a parts list. The list indicated that the wall-mounted ADSL modem contained an assembled modem on a printed circuit board, a metal housing and cover with tamper switch, a connection cable 6 feet long with an RJ11 connector at each end, a battery connection cable for optional battery, which is not included, and software in non-volatile (FLASH) memory.

Software is considered recorded media. Legal Note 6 to Chapter 85, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) states:

“Records, tapes and other media of heading 8523 or 8524 remain classified in those headings when entered with the apparatus for which they are intended. This note does not apply to such media when they are entered with articles other than the apparatus for which they are intended. For the purposes of this note, the term “apparatus for which they are intended” refers to apparatus which reads or plays the media or which records or writes on the media.”

As per your product description, the software (recorded media) is for installation on standard personal computers (PCs) and is capable of connecting a variety of different communicating devices to the Internet. Since the software is imported with a modem, an item for which it is not intended, classification within headings 8523 or 8524 is not applicable. As such, Legal Note 6 to Chapter 85, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United states (HTSUS) is satisfied. The modem coupled with the software makes this a set, with the essential character being the modem, classifiable within heading 8517.

You suggested Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) subheading 8517.50.50, which provides for “Other apparatus, Telephonic.” Telephonic refers to the transmission of voice. However, modems are capable of transmitting voice, video, and data. The transmission of more than voice is considered telegraphic. Therefore, subheading 8517.50.90, which provides for “Other apparatus, telegraphic: Other” is more appropriate.

The applicable subheading for the wall-mounted Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) modem will be 8517.50.9000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “ Other apparatus for carrier-current line systems or for digital line systems: Other: Telegraphic: Other.” The rate of duty will be free.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Linda M. Hackett at 646-733-3015.


Robert B. Swierupski

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