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The TV broadcast band in the United States (channels 2-51) is evolving through the conversion to DTV and the FCC’s desire to make more VHF and UHF bandwidth available for wireless broadband communications.  The FCC adopted rules (47 C.F.R. § 15.701 et seq) to allow unlicensed radio transmitters to operate in the broadcast television spectrum at locations where spectrum is not used by licensed services. The rules allow applications similar to those currently deployed in the 900 MHz and 2.4 GHz ISM and 5 GHz UNII bands.

Unused TV spectrum is termed “TV White Spaces”, or simply “TV White Space”.  The FCC has not dictated specific modulation or protocol requirements for TV Band Devices (TVBDs), allowing TV White Space to employ a wide range of devices and applications on an unlicensed basis, similar to Wi-Fi.  The FCC has also ensured incumbent TV band Spectrum users (TV broadcasters, public safety, registered microphone users, etc) have priority over TV White Space Device operation.  These entities are protected by a TV White Space Database. To make certain incumbent users are protected, TV White Space devices communicate with a database to obtain a list of currently available White Space channels.  Available channels may vary over time, depending on TVBD device type and location.

Spectrum Bridge is leading the industry in developing the technology needed to bring critical mass to the white space eco-system.  Spectrum Bridge demonstrated an experimental prototype TV White Spaces Database to the FCC in January 2009, operating a complete online TV White Spaces solution since June 2009 and appointed by the FCC as a TV white space database Administrator in 2010.  Spectrum Bridge has also worked with industry leaders such as Dell, Google, Nokia and Microsoft to deploy experimental broadband networks employing TV white spaces to demonstrate the utility of this new technology.

Spectrum Bridge has developed and made tools available to help you understand the utility and implications of using TV White Spaces Spectrum: 

  • TV White Spaces Database – Spectrum Bridge's TV White Space database solution is used by TVBDs (white space capable radio devices) to access available channel data. Organizations seeking protected entity status may also register their operations to receive protected status. If you are a developer, please contact us about our partner program.
  • White Space Spectrum Search – View available TV white space channels at any U.S. location.
  • TV White Spaces US Interactive Map – An interactive U.S. map tool powered by Spectrum Bridge's TV White Spaces database that depicts available TV white space and protected entities.
  • micFrequency iPhone Application Spectrum Bridge's Wireless Microphone Frequency Locator identifies spectrum available for unlicensed wireless microphone operation.
  • Show My White Space iPhone Application – Quickly find white spaces spectrum available at any U.S. location.

If you have an application that might benefit from TV white spaces spectrum, Spectrum Bridge can help.  You can contact us directly or submit a Project form describing your needs. 


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