Steering into the Future with More Wi-Fi simply by Sharing the Upper 5 GHz Music group

Earlier this year, we all joined together to write about making more space for Wi-Fi simply by exploring sharing opportunities in the 5850-5925 MHz band, or 5. 9 GHz band. More unlicensed airwaves in this band could lead to lots of great things—more wireless hotspots, less network congestion, greater speeds, and faster innovation. So we are pleased to see that our vision for this spectrum is currently a lot closer to reality thanks to the efforts of Congress and a broad group of stakeholders with interest in these airwaves.

First, a little background for perspective. Back in 1999, the 5. 9 GHz band had been set aside by the Commission for the automotive aftermarket. Since that time, efforts have been underway to use this spectrum to develop technology that can reduce car crashes and improve roadway safety. This system, known as Dedicated Short Range Communications Service (DSRC), is designed to have cars “talk” in real time to one another and communicate with street lights, curbs, bicycles, and even pedestrians to reduce the amount of auto accidents, including fatalities.

We saw efforts to develop DSRC firsthand this summer, when we journeyed together to Michigan to visit the Crash Avoidance Metrics Partnership (CAMP) and the University of Michigan Transport Research Institute (UMTRI), which are the national hubs for this safety effort. While there, we test-drove new car safety prototypes, listened to concerns about possible Wi-Fi interference, plus discussed spectrum sharing with both car manufacturers and researchers. We furthermore got the chance to see Mcity, 1 testing ground for the driverless cars of the future. It was a terrific visit, and came away with a desire to function harder to resolve outstanding issues plus improve opportunities for both car safety and Wi-Fi in the five. 9 GHz band.

On this front, last week represented genuine progress. Members of Congress known as on the Department of Transportation (DOT), Department of Commerce (DOC), plus FCC to explore opening up the five. 9 GHz band for unlicensed use. Thanks to leadership from United states senate Commerce Committee Chairman Thune plus Senators Rubio and Booker, the Commission now has a framework meant for testing in the 5. 9 Gigahertz band that will help ensure that unlicensed posting does not cause harmful interference in order to incumbents, including DSRC. This construction includes nine principles that a broad group of stakeholders—automakers, unlicensed spectrum promoters, and technology companies—have come together to support. It also includes specific testing responsibilities for the FCC regarding interference-avoidance plus allocation of spectrum use in the 5. 9 GHz band. Furthermore, this effort builds on the function of the House Energy and Commerce Panel, which has led to a series of talks along with stakeholders and regulators to help make a way forward and develop posting plans.

This improvement is exciting. But we are furthermore impatient, and a lot of work lies forward. So we will press the Percentage to start a proceeding to set testing parameters, evaluate results, and seek public comment on what we learn from our own tests. A fair testing process can help all interested parties—and we will function to ensure it proceeds expeditiously. Included in this effort, we want to see that range allocated for automobile safety within the 5. 9 GHz band can be used for just that—safety—and that more Wi fi is safely available for wireless accessibility and innovation nationwide. We think there is space in our airwaves for both—and we look forward to making it happen.


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