Thursday, September 23, 2010

Is whitespace the next wave?

First there was dial up, then broadband, and now we have Wi-Fi. Each of these new technologies has led to huge leaps in innovation for how we communicate. From email, to instant messaging and video chat on smart phones. Now the next big thing in wireless technology is on the way.

Today the FCC is voting on whether or not to release the broadcast whitespace that was made available when broadcast television went from analog to digital. If approved, the whitespace will be available to anyone to develop wireless communications.

Why should you care?

Well, for one, this new spectrum operates at a much lower frequency, so it travels further and is not affected by walls, trees and other obstacles like our current Wi-Fi signals. Essentially with just a few transmitters, most cities could offer free Wi-Fi to their residents.

With 4 billion laptops, smartphones, iPods and other wirelessly connected devices this could change the game in how we communicate. But don't take my word for it, Google, Microsoft, Intel and Dell already have major R&D initiatives underway to figure out the best way to use the new spectrum.

Are you ready to catch this wave?

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