back to article Rural white space wireless standard signed off

Nearly seven years after the IEEE’s 802.22 working group was first formed, the 802.22 standard has been published. The standard is designed to take advantage of television “white space” frequencies between channels. As countries roll out digital television and reallocate the spectrum previously occupied by broadcasters, vacant …


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Simply not good enough.

There simply isn't enough reliable bandwidth in the sub GHz spectrum to do anything more than fill in a few rural cold spots with what will be by all accounts a highly indifferent service.

The time would be far better spent on sorting out the legalities and costs of laying fibre.


Cost effective

It isn't cost effective to run fiber in rural areas. I live in the "suburb" of a rural town and my street has ~10 houses per mile. Head another mile down the road and the population density drops.

As a result, calling this "indiffferent" is just nuts when compared to areas that are currently served by dial up or satellite. I had satellite internet and while I got DSL-like bandwidth on large file downloads, the latency (1-3 seconds) rendered it barely faster than dial-up for general usage. I finally got DSL when lightning toasted the area's switch and the replacement had just enough signal to get me 768Kb.

Depending on collision avoidance, channel splitting, and the over-subscription factor, each tower could offer DSL-like performance to a couple hundred subscribers. Assuming each subscriber is a family/business, that serves a few thousand people. The tower is likely half the up front cost and less than 10% the long-term maintenance cost of fiber.

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