updated 06:45 pm EST, Mon December 6, 2010
FCC confirms white space rules go live January 5
The Federal Register (PDF) today revealed that the FCC's white space wireless rules would take effect on January 5. The milestone will clear companies to start using the frequencies between channels and will also require the promised white space database to tell companies and users which airwaves are free. One company is expected to manage the database, but the FCC's Hugh Van Tuyl said that the agency was still determining who would be responsible and wasn't tied to the January 5 date.
Google is the most significant name among the group and was one of the key proponents of white space data. Other candidates include Comsearch, Neustar, Key Bridge Global, KB Enterprises in a deal with LS Telcom, Frequency Finder joined to RadioSoft, WSdB, Spectrum Bridge and Telcordia Technologies.
The technology has been nicknamed "super Wi-Fi" due to the combination of its unlicensed, free-to-use nature with its support for low frequencies and much longer ranges than typical Wi-Fi. Microsoft and other companies have also championed white space. If used to its potential, the technology could see people both accessing personal wireless routers from much greater distances but also Internet providers that could connect neighborhoods to a single, fast Internet line without having to wire each home. [via Television Broadcast]