With the impending repack of the TV band, already scarce spectrum will be getting scarcer. In an effort to preserve UHF spectrum for unlicensed devices and wireless microphones, the FCC has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing the reservation of one vacant UHF TV channel in every geographic area of the country for use by unlicensed TV white space devices and wireless microphones.
Fully four years after adopting rules for unlicensed TV band devices (TVBDs), also called “white space” systems, the FCC has authorized roll-out beyond the two small test areas previously approved. Touted by advocates as “Wi-Fi on steroids,” TVBDs can now boot up in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and Washington, DC. The FCC expects to extend authorization nationwide by mid-January.