Feeds

Wireless power limit doubled to bridge digital divide

And UWB licences to be axed

Boost IT visibility and business value

Ofcom has allowed fixed broadband internet providers to double the power of their signals in a move the UK telecoms regulator says will help bridge the digital divide.

The new rules apply to the 5.8GHz frequency, which is used by fixed WiMax radio technology for wireless internet connections. The frequency is subject to light regulation from Ofcom which allows the registration of terminals at its website.

The power of base stations in the spectrum is limited, though. They will now be able to increase the power they emit from two to four watts. This will extend the reach of each base station.

The regulator said in its announcement of the change that this will allow providers to extend the coverage areas and bridge the digital divide.

"Concern has been raised that a so-called digital divide exists in the availability of services, particularly broadband, in rural and urban areas in the UK," said an Ofcom statement. "Ofcom's Communications Market Report: Nations and Regions showed that the gap is closing and 41 per cent of adults in rural areas have broadband internet at home compared to 45 per cent of adults in urban areas. Changing regulation in this band, enabling greater geographical coverage, could help to increase access to wireless broadband in rural areas."

The decision is the result of a consultation into the rise in power limits.

Ofcom has also said it will soon change its regulations so that users of equipment that communicates via ultra wide band (UWB) technology will no longer need licences. The very short range systems are commonly used for video wireless or camera wireless systems.

The rule change will bring the UK into line with an EU Directive which demands that regulations be changed by 21 August.

"Globalisation of the marketplace and increased interest from businesses in the potential of UWB technology has led to a growing need for more international solutions which utilise spectrum in a harmonised manner for UWB technology," said Ofcom.

"UWB solutions now have the advanced technical characteristics necessary, for example, to allow for the co-location of multiple devices in a small area which is a requirement of the Short Range Device, consumer electronics, retail and logistics industries. Implementation of the Decision on UWB will go some way towards addressing these requirements and enable the benefits of this new technology to be realised."

Copyright © 2007, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Related links

The 5.8GHz announcement (pdf)
The UWB regulations proposal

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
NBN Co claims 96 mbps download speeds for FTTN trial
Umina trial also delivers 30 mbps uploads, but exact rig used not revealed
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
EE: STILL Blighty's best mobe network, says 'Frappucino' Moore
Fresh round of network stats fisticuffs possibly on the cards here
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
ROAD TRIP! An FCC road trip – Leahy demands net neutrality debate across US
You crashed watchdog's site, now time to crash its ears
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?