20/10/2010

Ofcom liberalises the WTA

Ofcom the super regulator will changes to the Wireless Telegraphy Act to come into force on 1st November 2010 that will allow the following to be used in a license exempt manner: -

* Railway level-crossing radars at 24 GHz.

* Fixed Wireless Services (FWS) at 59.1 to 63.9 GHz.

* 900 and 1800 MHz Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) terminals.

The changes also liberalise the technical specifications for the following: -

* Short Range Devices (SRDs) below 30 MHz when operating underwater.

* High Density Fixed Satellite Services (HDFSS).

* SRDs covered by the Commission Decision of 30 June 2010 amending Decision 2006/771/EC on harmonisation of the radio spectrum for use by short-range devices (the SRD Decision).

Though railway enthusiasts may be happy that railway crossing radars no longer need a license, the interesting ones for the general public are that FWS at 59.1 to 63.9 GHz (60GHz) are now license exempt as are 900 and 1800 MHz UMTS (i.e. 3G) terminals.

FWS at 60GHz will allow for very high-speed short range wireless links which will be suitable for in-room transmissions e.g. video links from a set-top-box to a TV mounted on a wall without using wires. Equipment is also expected for connecting USB equipment over wireless.

The 3G terminals at 900/1800 MHz opens the way for refarming the 2G networks so that they can be used for 3G services. When Ofcom sort this out, it should increase 3G coverage and make life easier for everyone.

The full statement is available from Ofcom.
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