FCC says make it happen
Last modified on Wednesday, 15 October 2008 04:20
Although it is opposed by U.S. telcos, the idea of a free nationwide wireless Internet network has moved one step following a ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
The idea is to open up unused portions of the U.S. airwaves to wireless Web use. The proposed band is 2155-2175 MHz, or AWS-3, for Advanced Wireless Service. U.S. telecom giant T-Mobile claimed that using AWS-3 for wireless Internet use would interfere with mobile devices operating in the adjacent 2110-2155 MHz band known as AWS-1.
However, a new report by FCC engineers has revealed that T-Mobile’s complaints are completely made up and there was no "significant risk of harmful interference."
Already a Silicon Valley start-up, M2Z Networks Inc. applied to the FCC, the U.S. regulatory body, in May 2006 to lease the AWS-3 spectrum to build a free nationwide wireless broadband network. M2Z pledged to ensure broadband coverage for 95 percent of the population within 10 years.
FCC chairman Kevin Martin has said he wants to extend free access to the Internet and has proposed auctioning off the portion of the spectrum that would be dedicated to free wireless use.