Update: Regulators Grant More White Space Broadband Trials


Last month, CivSource reported on a recent successful trial of TV white space broadband in Cape Town, South Africa. The project is being backed by Google, with the help of technology from Carlson Wireless which is also backing another project in California’s Gold Country. Since then, advocates for the technology have formed trade associations and are seeking additional approval from regulators to add trial projects.

According to a new announcement from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), LS telecom AG, has been conditionally designated as a white-space database administrator for tracking unoccupied TV frequencies in the U.S. market. LS telecom AG is a German company and will have a 45 day trial period which starts on Monday.

This trial period will also serve as a public comment period, and time for users to test out the service. Over the 45 days, regulators, technologists and users will vet the company and offer time for the public to be heard. So far, only two other companies are database administrators for white space broadband – Spectrum Bridge and Telcordia. Google also applied to be a database administrator, as it serves this function in the Cape Town trial. That application is awaiting approval, although Telcordia already relies on Google Maps technology for its service.

White space advocates have also created their own trade association group the Dynamic Spectrum Alliance. Current members include: 6Harmonics, Adaptrum, BSkyB, Carlson, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – South Africa, Computer and Communication Research Center – Taiwan, Indigo Telecom, InterDigital, Microsoft, MediaTek, Network Startup Resource Center (University of Oregon), Neul, National Institute of Information and Communications Technology – Japan (NICT), RealTek, Ruckus Wireless, Singapore Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R), StarHub, Strathclyde Centre For White Space Communications, Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH), Taiwan Institute for Information Industry, UhuruOne, WaveTek and White Space Technologies Africa.

The Singapore White Spaces Pilot Group (SWSPG) has also announced its next wave of TV White Spaces (TVWS) commercial pilot deployments in Singapore with Gardens by the Bay, Sentosa Development Corporation, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) and the Eurokars Group. These pilots follow others first launched in the country last year.

SWSPG was founded in April 2012 to develop pilot projects, collaborate on R&D efforts and support Singapore’s plan to implement a regulatory framework for adopting TV white space. Its founding members included I²R, Microsoft, StarHub and Neul and early members included Adaptrum, Power Automation, Singapore Island Country Club, Spectrum Bridge and ZDW Systems.