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Free Content White Spaces the New Wi-Fi?

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This article is an introduction to a major spectrum opportunity that is now catching the eye of regulators, worldwide, as they seek capacity for more ubiquitous and affordable broadband Internet access.

At a time when the demand for spectrum has never been greater, white spaces in television broadcast spectrum are a prime, largely unused, resource. Wireless technologies have advanced rapidly over the last decade, to the point where the technical capabilities to harness white spaces now exist. The missing piece of the jigsaw has been a regulatory framework that would allow the new applications to share the UHF bands with the broadcast television and supporting services. However, spectrum regulators are now laying the foundations for this, with the United States (FCC) and the United Kingdom (Ofcom) leading the way.

The most pressing potential application of white spaces is the extension of broadband Internet access. Broadcasters may benefit from this, as the popularity of interactive services grows.
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Keywords: broadband Internet; digital dividend; spectrum; white spaces

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: UK-based Consultant.

Publication date: 2010-01-01

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  • The International Journal of Digital Television will describe and explain the transition to digital TV and wider trends in television. As switchover happens across the globe and television's operations and audiences are transformed, the International Journal of Digital Television will be at the forefront of efforts to understand the changes and developments.
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