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FCC Frees White Space Spectrum for Wireless Broadband Service
By: Joe Eitel
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    Table of Contents:
  • FCC Frees White Space Spectrum for Wireless Broadband Service
  • White Space Supporters
  • The Rules
  • Money to be Made

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    FCC Frees White Space Spectrum for Wireless Broadband Service - The Rules

    (Page 3 of 4 )

    So, what exactly are the rules that were set by the FCC for unlicensed devices set to take advantage of the new white spaces? They simply require that fixed and portable unlicensed devices include geolocation technology in addition to spectrum-sensing technology. It may sound complicated, and as if you have to purchase something to make your laptop, cell phone or other device white space accessible, but thatís not the case at all.

    Most mobile devices already come equipped with geolocation, which simply means a geographic location can be attained. Laptops, cell phones and other devices almost always come equipped with geolocation in one of the following forms: Internet Protocol (IP) address, MAC address, RFID, hardware embedded article/production number, embedded software number (such as UUID, Exif/IPTC/XMP ), invoice, Wi-Fi connection location or device GPS coordinates.

    Geolocation usually works by automatically looking up an IP address on a WHOIS service and retrieving the registrant's physical address. For some low-power devices that do not use geolocation technology and use sensing technology exclusively, the FCC said it will require a much more rigorous approval process.

    The FCC said it also had addressed issue for wireless microphone manufacturers and their customers. For example, the FCC said that locations where wireless microphones are used, such as sporting venues and event and production facilities, can be registered in the geolocation data base and will be protected in the same way as other services. And even though sensing technology isn't completely full-proof, the commission is requiring that devices use sensing technology to see if wireless microphones are being used in the same spectrum bands.

    In addition to these rules, the FCC will require that all white space devices be tested and certified by the FCC Laboratory, just as they require testing and certification of all other wireless devices, including cell phones and wireless routers.

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