Feeds

Blighty's fast mobe broadband in music wrecking probe

Wireless kit blasted with LTE rays for a month

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

On Monday Ofcom will run tests in Baldock to find out whether next-gen mobile broadband networks will knacker headphones and microphones, ruining Brits' enjoyment of music.

Lots of short-range wireless devices use frequencies just above the bands Ofcom will be flogging off for LTE use next year. Although the regulator is pretty sure interference won't be a problem, it has invited concerned manufacturers to visit the Hertfordshire countryside and find out how their kit responds to Blighty's version of 4G.

Ofcom commissioned a batch of testing last year, and discovered that intruder alarms, cordless headphones, microphones, smart meters and RFID tags were all vulnerable to interference from LTE if they were put close enough, but such devices are required to mitigate against interference anyway so shouldn't be operationally impacted.

The mega-auction of frequencies, scheduled for later this year, will include a chunk of spectrum from 790-862MHz which used to be filled with analogue TV but is now vacant thanks to the switch to digital - a tech that contracted telly down the dial. Just above that band is an unlicensed slot for low-powered devices, such as domestic headphones, which have been happily neighbouring analogue TV for years but now need to get used to having LTE next door.

Ofcom has already established that digital TV isn't going to like having LTE adjacent to it, and is putting aside £180m to deal with that issue, but the short-range devices above the band are generally more robust having always had to play nicely with each other if not anyone else.

The unlicensed nature of the 863-865MHz band led to all sorts of low-power kit coexisting, and having to cope with interference from each other, so when Ofcom tested a raft of gadgets [PDF, the good bit is on page 6] it found they'd cope quite adequately with any interference.

But the regulator wants to be sure, so has set up a testing site which will run up an example LTE network until the end of June, so engineers who want to be sure their gear will work next year should make an appointment [PDF] and pop along to check. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.