For the last several years, we have heard about the potential for broadband to be delivered through white space spectrum. While the broadcasting industry has been skeptical about the ability to deliver broadband without interruption, engineers and tech firms have believed in the potential of white space broadband delivery. After several years, engineers have built a device which has now been approved by the FCC to send and receive signals over unused broadcast spectrum known as white space.
A few points from this article from Ars Technica:
- Since 2007, advocates from the broadband industry and opponents from the broadcast industry have fought a regulatory battle over white space transmissions.
- KTS, the company receiving the first approval from the FCC for their Agility Data Radio device, has described the product as being capable of accessing more spectrum and throughput than any other device. It can achieve data rates of up to 4 Mbps.
- A second device is in the works, which is more rugged and versatile utilizing UHF and VHF bands with data rates of 0.5 and 3.1 Mbps.
- FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski was quoted as saying, “We are taking an important step towards enabling a new wave of wireless innovation.”
The new device will go a long way in providing more solutions to solving the major challenges of broadband access. With a serious threat of spectrum shortage looming in the wireless broadband industry, devices which can utilize unused white spaces can be part of the solution. While the technology is still very early in its development, it is a promising time for the broadband industry and the United States as it seeks to maximize access and data transmissions.