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Spectrum Policy: The View From the FCC. David Furth Associate Bureau Chief Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, FCC . National Spectrum Managers Association Rosslyn, VA May 24, 2005. Wireless Migration. Wireless providers are key competitors across voice, data, and video services:

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Spectrum Policy: The View From the FCC

David FurthAssociate Bureau ChiefWireless Telecommunications Bureau, FCC

National Spectrum Managers Association

Rosslyn, VA

May 24, 2005

wireless migration
Wireless Migration

Wireless providers are key competitors across voice, data, and video services:

  • Voice
    • 182 million US subscribers
    • Usage rising; wireless substitution increasing
  • Wireless Data
    • Rapid increase in Wi-Fi hot spots and users
    • 3G being rolled out in major markets
  • Video
    • DBS – represents 22% of MVPD subscribers
    • Mobile video services emerging
wireless wireline substitution us

US Wireless Minutes

Compared to Interstate Wireline Minutes

Americans now spend more time talking on their cell phones than their wireline phones. This familiarity with wireless is likely to help drive demand for wireless broadband.

Wireless Minutes

Interstate Wireline Minutes

Wireless-Wireline Substitution -- US
  • Wireless usage in US increasing compared to wireline
  • Major impact on traditional telecom market structure
is wireless the third broadband pipe

US High Speed Lines in Service by Technology

(June 2004)

Source: FCC

Wireless is one of many technologies currently used by consumers to access the Internet at high speeds. High speed lines are over 200 kbps in at least one direction.

Is Wireless the Third Broadband “Pipe”?
  • DSL or cable are still the dominant broadband platforms
  • Wireless technologies “extend” the wireline network through in-home networking, public “hot spots”
  • Wireless internet service providers (WISPs) can provide broadband in areas where cable or DSL services are not available (e.g., rural areas).
broadband technologies
Wireline Technologies

DSL

Cable Modem

BPL (broadband over power lines)

Wireless Technologies

Bluetooth

Wi-Fi

Wi-MAX

3G Wireless

OFDM

HSDPA

Ultra-Wideband

Satellites

Millimeter Wave Bands

Broadband Technologies
variation in wireless broadband networks

Personal Area

Networks

Local

Area

Networks

Speed

Metropolitan

Area

Networks

Mobile Networks

Distance

Wireless Broadband Technologies

Variation in Wireless Broadband Networks
3g rollout in u s

3G Mobile Broadband Deployment by Technology

(January 2005)

CDMA 1xEV-DO

WCDMA/UMTS

Flash-OFDM

3G Rollout in U.S.
many uses compete for the same spectrum
Many Uses Compete For the Same Spectrum

Mobile & FixedSatellite

Cellular & PCS

Public Safety/

Critical Infrastructure

AM/FM Broadcasting

Military Systems

Unlicensed

Devices

Radio Spectrum

(3 kHz - 3 GHz)

Other Federal

Government Uses

Radiolocation

Analog & Digital

Television

Wireless

Broadband

Broadcast Auxiliary

Amateur & CB Radio

Subscriber growth, system capacity constraints, new technology requirements create demand for more bandwidth, but vacant spectrum below 3 GHz (“beachfront property” for mobile) is very scarce in US

fcc spectrum task force major findings recommendations
FCC Spectrum Task Force:Major Findings & Recommendations
  • Spectrum access is a more significant problem than physical scarcity
    • Most spectrum is not in use most of the time
    • New technologies can operate in “white spaces” (in time and space)
  • A new approach to interference protection is necessary
    • New technology is more interference-tolerant
    • More measurement is needed to quantify spectrum usage and availability.
  • Spectrum policy must evolve towards more flexible and market-oriented regulatory models
    • Regulatory barriers inhibit spectrum access
fcc spectrum task force major findings recommendations10
FCC Spectrum Task Force:Major Findings & Recommendations
  • Spectrum regulation must be based on clear definitions of rights and responsibilities
  • No single regulatory model should be applied to all spectrum
  • Pursue balanced spectrum policy that includes
    • Granting of exclusive spectrum rights through market-based mechanisms (including easements in the first instance)
    • Creating open access to spectrum “commons”
    • Command-and-control regulation used in limited circumstances (e.g., public safety)
fcc spectrum task force steps for enhancing spectrum access
FCC Spectrum Task Force:Steps for Enhancing Spectrum Access
  • Designate additional bands for flexible use (mix of licensed and unlicensed)
  • Apply policies to existing bands that promote spectrum access
    • Technological flexibility (allow multiple and evolving standards)
    • Secondary markets (transferable spectrum rights)
    • Look for non-interfering spectrum sharing opportunities
current fcc spectrum issues
Current FCC Spectrum Issues
  • Move Toward Auction of AWS Spectrum
  • New Broadband Rules at 2.5 GHz
  • 3650 MHz Band Opened to New Wireless Technologies
  • Transitioning 700 MHz Band from Analog TV to Wireless Broadband
  • Expanding Access for Unlicensed Devices
  • 800 MHz Rebanding to Resolve Interference to Public Safety Systems
  • Restructure Airborne Communications Services
  • Facilitate Deployment of Rural Services
  • Further Development of Secondary Markets
spectrum policies for licensed broadband
Spectrum Policiesfor Licensed Broadband
  • Identify new spectrum for Advanced Wireless Services (includes 3G)
  • Allow evolution within existing bands to more advanced services (e.g., evolution from 2G to 2.5G/3G)
  • Allow licensees flexibility to develop any technologically feasible services that best accomplish their business plans
    • No mandated technology
    • Rules permit multiple, evolving standards
    • Flexible approach differs from original cellular rules and European 3G model
spectrum policies for unlicensed broadband
Spectrum Policiesfor Unlicensed Broadband
  • FCC has opened multiple bands (e.g., 2.4 GHz, 5.8 GHz) to unlicensed use
  • Ultra-Wideband authorized to operate on “underlay” basis
  • Unlicensed bands are well-suited to very low-power, high-bandwidth wireless applications
    • “Open access” model reduces entry costs
    • Lack of interference protection places premium on spectrum efficiency and robust technology
    • But overuse of unlicensed bands can lead to “tragedy of the commons”
potential additional spectrum for broadband
Potential Additional Spectrum for Broadband
  • Advanced Wireless Services (AWS)
    • 120 MHz reallocated for advanced fixed/mobile services from military, fixed microwave, and MSS
  • 700 MHz Band
    • 66 MHz of spectrum to be vacated by analog TV broadcasters
  • 2.5 GHz Band
    • FCC recently adopted new band plan and regulatory flexibility for 196 MHz of spectrum used for instructional TV and “wireless cable”
  • 3650-3700 MHz
    • Non-exclusive licensing approach for contention-based devices
spectrum for aws
Spectrum for AWS
  • AWS I
    • 90 MHz of paired spectrum (1710-1755/2110-2155 MHz)
    • CSEA “Trust Fund” legislation enacted – auctions will fund federal relocation
    • Service rules in place; band plan reconsideration petitions pending
    • Auction targeted for Summer 2006
  • AWS II
    • Two 10 MHz paired blocks (1915-1920/1995-2000 MHz, 2020-2025/2175-2180 MHz)
    • Service rules proposed in 2004 NPRM
  • AWS III
    • Single 20 MHz unpaired block (2155-2175 MHz)
    • Service rules not yet proposed
700 mhz transition
700 MHz Transition
  • Upper 700 MHz (Channels 60-69)
    • 36 MHz of spectrum to be auctioned for commercial use
    • 24 MHz allocated for public safety
  • Lower 700 MHz (Channels 52-59)
    • 18 MHz already auctioned
    • 30 MHz to be auctioned
  • Guard Bands
    • 4 MHz – already auctioned, but Nextel has returned licenses
  • Transition Issues
    • Timing of auctions and DTV transition (possible legislation?)
    • Interference protection during transition (e.g., Aloha Waiver & Qualcomm Petition)
    • Intelligence Reform Act – comment sought on public safety needs
2 5 ghz band brs ebs
2.5 GHz Band (BRS/EBS)
  • Former MDS-ITFS band -- 196 MHz of spectrum used for instructional TV and “wireless cable”
  • R&O/FNPRM (2004)
    • Band restructured into 3 segments (2 low power, 1 high power)
    • 2495-2500 MHz added to band; creation of two relocation slots for 2.1 GHz MDS Channels
    • Incumbents will receive equivalent bandwidth in new band plan
    • Commercial/educational dichotomy & leasing retained
    • 3-year period for incumbent “proponents” to develop transition plans on market-by-market basis
  • FNPRM seeks comment on transition alternatives for markets where no transition plan emerges after 3 years
    • “Voucher” option proposal for non-transition markets
3650 3700 mhz
3650-3700 MHz
  • Band Characteristics
    • Government transfer band (formerly used for radar)
    • Used by satellite earth stations, primarily on East and West Coast
    • 3.5 GHz used internationally for licensed broadband (potential for Wi-MAX deployment)
  • Report and Order (2005)
    • Non-exclusive nationwide licensing
    • Registration of base stations
    • Use of band limited to “contention-based” devices capable of sharing
    • Incumbent satellite earth stations protected
thank you
Thank you!
  • For more information
    • FCC website: www.fcc.gov
    • WTB website: wireless.fcc.gov
    • E-mail: David.Furth@fcc.gov
    • Phone: 202-418-0632