The United States is ready for Super-wifi

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In the future, wireless internet will use the frequencies not used by television. The inevitable shortage of frequencies and the absence of high speed coverage are the technological and industrial challenges the US will need to solve at that time.

In a vast area like the United States, particularly in large rural spaces and in towns which are sometimes very distant one from another, it isn’t always easy to establish an internet connection.

A solution has actually been tested on the other side of the Atlantic. The concept of « Super-Wifi » , developed through a project called « Air.U », which has been supported by Google and Microsoft, has already been installed at Houston, in Texas, in 2011. The rural zones campus should begin to be equipped at the start of 2013.

This technology uses the white spaces in television channel frequencies, and offers many advantages: Coverage over greater distances than wi-fi, the ability to travel through surface irregularities (mountains, walls, etc). It solves the problems of mobile phone network jams and will further the development of tablets, smartphones etc.

Above all, this new signal will theoretically be able to have a speed of 160 km, usable even in a domestic network. But the frequencies used by wi-fi and super-wifi will not be the same, the standard technical specifications will not be compatible, and the equipment necessary to use one or the other is actually quite different.

For the IT sector, the solution will be to develop microchips which are able to function with both technologies, something which Texas Instruments has said it is ready to try, after having had prior knowledge and early warning of the Whitespace Alliance (WSA). The mission of the WSA is to promote the deployment and use of standards based products and services as a means of providing broadband capabilities via white spaces spectrum.

However, the risk of this is the amount of time it will take. The widening of the possibilities for network connection, will most certainly require several more years before it will be operationally viable.

However, even if initially the objective of super-wifi is to respond to this problem, to move towards using terrestrial television frequencies, is, most importantly, going to put a stop to the inevitable shortage of radio frequencies and ease the congestion of high speed traffic on the Internet.


[1] Credits photo : Super Wifi Summit - Home (Screnshoot)

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