White Space Revolution

USB wireless adapterImage via WikipediaThe real question is why does broadcast television have a-n-y spectrum? Why is it not all going to wireless broadband? But until we get there, this small development is small solace. This development taken to its logical conclusion will finally turn the smartphone and the tablet into the laptop. In that I mean connectivity will cease to be an issue. For a flat monthly fee you can have as much of it as you want.

Business Insider: The Next Billion Dollar Wireless Industry Has Officially Launched
White Spaces has been called "WiFi on steroids" and has been championed by the likes of Google and Microsoft...... White spaces brings with it tons of potential for new devices and applications. It is faster than WiFi so it can handle more data. It can bring (nearly) free Internet access to the most remote areas of the country, places that can't get WiFi. ......... Because it uses broadcast television signals, any place that can pick up a broadcast TV signal should be able to tap into White Spaces. A large range of wireless frequencies have always been reserved for broadcast television, much of it unused

Ars Technica: FCC green lights first white space broadband device
In September of 2007 the general public first heard about "white space" broadband devices via a series of scary television advertisements rolled out by TV broadcaster groups. "Digital television means you can watch your favorite shows with a crystal-clear picture," a narrator promised while generic grandma watched TV. "But if some high-tech companies like Microsoft get their way, your picture could freeze and become unwatchable," the ad warned viewers.......... Now after four years of regulatory combat between advocates and foes of unlicensed machines that can send and receive broadband through the unused TV bands, the FCC has announced the release of the very first authorized white space gadget. ....... services data rates up to 4Mbps. ...... "Unleashing white spaces spectrum has the potential to exceed even the many billions of dollars in economic benefit from WiFi, the last significant release of unlicensed spectrum, and drive private investment and job creation."
GigaOm: White spaces are a go! (at least in Wilmington)
Any white spaces devices accessing those airwaves will periodically check in with that database, which would then assign those device channels not being used for performances. ...... a radio receiver from Koos Technical Services designed to provide a last-mile link for outdoor surveillance cameras and telemetry systems ...... White spaces could be used to create a form of Super Wi-Fi, greatly expanding the number of cheap or even free wireless access options on the market. White spaces advocates have said the airwaves not only could be used to build greatly expanded public hotspots, but also as the primary broadband connection for homes in rural communities and as the connective glue linking smart grids together. ....... TV stations worry new, unlicensed, wireless broadband services will interfere with their transmissions. Performers are concerned their wireless mics won’t be protected even with the database in place. But the biggest threat could be Congress, which is reluctant to agree to creating any more unlicensed frequencies. ....... The House passed a spectrum bill last week that would prevent the FCC from designating any future TV spectrum it gets from broadcasters for unlicensed use. Instead, they would have to turn those airwaves into mobile broadband licenses, which they would then auction off to the highest bidder. ....... Congress isn’t trying to utterly crush the tech industry, but it is hard for it to give up the potential billions that auctioning off that spectrum to the highest bidder would entail. As taxpayers, we too should ask ourselves if unlicensed spectrum and more players getting licensed airwaves is worth the loss of a few billion in potential revenue in the government coffers.
BetaNews: With all White Space logged, 'Wi-Fi on steroids' can finally launch
White space, or the wireless spectrum that was freed from the transition from analog to digital television, would be available to use without requiring a wireless license, similar to the way wi-fi works today. The problem, of course, is that the wireless frequencies that fall in this white space varies from market to market. This is why the database was required. ....... To utilize the white space in a particular area, devices must query this database to find out which channels are unoccupied by authorized radio services, and the first official White Space test deployment will be Wilmington North Carolina, the city which three years ago became the first digital television "transition" market.
Mashable: FCC Approves First White Space Devices, Paving Way for Better Wi-Fi
New developments from the FCC could bring us one step closer to faster, more advanced wireless networks. ...... White spaces are unused spectrum between broadcast television channels. Although broadcasters argued that they needed this bandwidth for their own needs, the FCC disagreed and ruled to allow unlicensed usage of this spectrum in November 2008. Tech companies, including Google and Microsoft, have long lobbied that the FCC allow these white spaces to be used for more powerful Wi-Fi and wireless broadband. This could lead to what some have dubbed “Super Wi-Fi.” ........ the FCC has approved a device from Koos Technical Services “as the first product allowed to operate on an unlicensed basis on unused frequencies in the TV bands.” ...... Operations will expand nationwide as soon as the FCC completes and activates processing requests at other facilities.
Scientific American: FCC Dreams of a White (Space) Christmas for Wireless Gadgets
Tech companies such as Google and Microsoft have been saying for the past few years that white spaces will allow computers, mobile phones and other wireless devices to transfer data in gigabits per second (compared with Wi-Fi’s megabit-per-second speeds). Broadcasters, however, have demanded proof that wireless devices could efficiently pinpoint and use these white spaces without disrupting broadcast signals or other devices (such as wireless microphones) licensed to use the spectrum. ........ The proposed solution has been a database identifying white space locations that wireless devices could automatically consult before connecting. ...... checks the geographic location of a device requesting white-space access, calculates channels available for operation by the device for its reported location, and then returns a list of those channels. Success in Wilmington will enable the spread of additional regional databases nationwide. ....... The broadcast spectrum’s low-frequency waves have strong propagation characteristics allowing the signals to reach farther than Wi-Fi and penetrate walls and other impediments. Wireless carriers like Verizon and AT&T are in favor of white space use as a way of diverting mobile video traffic from their already overburdened cell networks.
AllThingsD: FAQ: So What’s Up With These “White Spaces,” Anyway?
to provide fixed and wireless broadband Internet services. It could also prove a good technology for moving video and other bulky data types around the home ...... Because the white space is in the lower frequencies, devices running in those frequencies could carry signals over longer distances and work better through walls and in other indoor environments. ....... The FCC is creating a way for those who are using wireless microphones to register them. Also, devices that want to access the white space range have to check in with a database to see what spaces are free in their particular area. In addition to approving the first device on Thursday, the FCC also approved the first such database. ...... Microsoft, a big backer of opening up the spectrum, commissioned a study in 2009 that found that availability of white-space technology could increase just the Wi-Fi-like device market by $3.9 billion to $7.3 billion per year. ...... The White Space spectrum is unlicensed, meaning any approved device and service can run there. However, it could pave the way for phones and tablets to someday take advantage of white-space capacity on occasion, as is done with Wi-Fi today. ..... cellular phones and tablets that have the ability to use white-space services ...... yet another type of radio that would have to be built into phones
The Register: Another Alliance pushes into White Space
The WhiteSpace Alliance will endorse the IEEE 802.22 standard for networks operating in unused television frequencies, but world domination is far from assured. ....... That information comes from a database, and device manufacturers sign up to specific database providers, but once that information is available the actual signals sent over the band aren't mandated. ...... So the band ends up like the 2.4GHz band: with baby-listeners, Wi-Fi devices and Bluetooth communications all coexisting, mostly happily, despite all using entirely incompatible protocols optimised for specific usage models. Bluetooth, for example, incorporates service discovery at a very low level and leaps around the band to avoid interference, while Wi-Fi keeps things as simple as possible to stay cheap but provides a faster connection when it is working. ....... Similarly 802.22 is aimed at Wireless Internet Service Providers (WISPs) who want to offer headline speeds of 29Mb/sec with a range of 100km
CED: WhiteSpace Alliance forms with eye on international markets
A new international trade association has formed, aimed at developing unused broadcast TV spectrum (white spaces) for use in new wireless broadband services. ...... The alliance is backing use of the new IEEE 802.22 standard, which defines a means of delivering up to 29 Mbps per TV channel; more than 40 such channels, when available together, can deliver more than 1 Gbps capacity, the alliance said. ..... The alliance expects to target unserved and underserved markets around the world with this technology. ...... While the group is initially interested in exploiting 802.22, the alliance said other technologies – it specifically mentioned 4G/LTE – could be used as complementary transmission techniques for services in higher-density areas.
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