FCC’s New TV White-Space Rules Pave the Way for Powerful, More Affordable Devices

April 9 2012 - Arcata, CA - “Everyone in the industry has been anxiously awaiting this ruling.” -- Jim Carlson. In a strong show of support for making unlicensed spectrum available to the public, the FCC today updated the rules about the use of TV white spaces, the unused channels in the TV spectrum in the VHF/UHF range.

The new rules pave the way for the future development of this breakthrough technology.

Under the new rules, equipment manufacturers like Carlson can now design more affordable equipment with far greater range and more flexibility. This means that wireless Internet service providers (WISPs) will be able to use TV channels to get service into previously unreachable areas at a lower cost.

Specifically, the FCC relaxed interference protection rules, defined adjacent channel power and raised the limit of antenna height above average terrain (HAAT).  

“These rules mean that the evolution of devices will be even more affordable,” commented Jim Carlson, CEO and chief engineer at Carlson. The ability to use less expensive components in the devices will guide future product development, he explained.

The new rules also allow for more flexibility in how the technology can be used, for example in suburban areas. The new interference protection rules mean more channels will be available for broadband transmission in more populated areas.

WISPs will be particularly pleased with the antenna HAAT limit, which the FCC raised from 76 meters to 250 meters. This will allow UHF signal, already known for its superior robustness, to propagate much farther and cover a much greater range. For WISPs this translates into more customers served and fewer failed installs.

“Everyone in the industry has been anxiously awaiting this ruling,” said Carlson, who more than a year ago contributed to the FCC’s regulatory process by filing a petition for reconsideration and a reply to opposition for reconsideration.

“Service providers, equipment manufacturers and spectrum database managers have been waiting to find out what kind of flexibility we have. Now we can all move ahead with clarification,” he said.

No Internet service in your area? Difficult terrain? No problem. Providers are getting ready to deploy Internet service into neighborhoods around the country using TV white-space technology. Call us at (800) 834-2076 to find out more.


Carlson Wireless Technologies, Inc.



2700 Foster Avenue, Arcata, CA 95521


Silicon Valley Office

440 N. Wolfe Rd, Sunnyvale, CA 94085

Tel: +1 707-822-7000
Fax: 707-822-7010




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