Feeds

Wireless power limit doubled to bridge digital divide

And UWB licences to be axed

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

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

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
Google Nest, ARM, Samsung pull out Thread to strangle ZigBee
But there's a flaw in Google's IP-based IoT system
Orange spent weekend spamming customers with TXTs
Zero, not infinity, is the Magic Number customers want
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
'Two-speed internet' storm turns FCC.gov into zero-speed website
Deadline for comments on net neutrality shake-up extended to Friday
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
NBN Co execs: No FTTN product until 2015
Faster? Not yet. Cheaper? No data
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
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.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.