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    EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020

    This is a discussion on EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020 within the General Computing and Internet forums, part of the Community channel category; thinkbroadband :: EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020 Ofcom has been working towards the ...

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      EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020

      thinkbroadband :: EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020
      Ofcom has been working towards the shift of Digital TV and wireless microphones out of the 694 MHz to 790 MHz (700 MHz band) area for some time and the latest report from Pascal Lamy to the EU outlines what could happen across the EU.

      1. Repurpose 700 MHz band for wireless broadband, with a time window of 2020 plus or minus two years. This is believed to be long enough to allow for minimal cost to broadcasters and people who will upgrade from old DTT kit that does not support lower bands over time.
      2. Ensure stability of regulation for the remaining 470 MHz to 694 MHz for broadcasters and reject any plans to use frequency in this block for mobile broadband.
      3. Re-visit the way that the spectrum is being used in 2025, and thus be ready to take account of changes e.g. broadcast TV has naturally moved to IPTV delivery over fibre based services.

      For UK broadcasters none of this should be a surprise, Ofcom has consulted on this exact topic for some years now, and as Ultra HD starts to become more interesting (oddly during the World Cup stores tried to sell TV sets on support of UHD, even though no football was broadcast in UHD) the reality that DTT may not be up to the task will become more of an issue. Ofcom has suggested that a single multiplex that can transmit 20 to 30 SD channels might only manage 1 UHD channel using MPEG4 or two or three channels using the more efficient HEVC system.

      The much complained about move of BBC Three to an IPTV only channel in 2015 will be a key test for the UK market. The move was said to be a money saving exercise by the BBC, but by experimenting with the generation who are hooked to being connected 24/7 it will prove a real world test of whether IPTV is mainstream or not in the UK.

      The appeal of the 700 MHz band to mobile broadband services is that has much better reach and penetration into buildings, combine that with improved efficiencies that 5G is promising and while we will not see 10 Gbps to our mobile phones we may see some interesting innovation e.g. a FreeView set-top box with built in 5G modem that picks up the big five terrestrial channels over the old fashioned aerial and the other channels delivered over IP multi-cast or full on demand IPTV.

      Broadcast TV is far from dead, but the masses of channels down an aerial era may be ending, with just the key channels broadcast over free-to-air radio spectrum and the second tier channels living a free-over-IP life.
      Comment: Currently the Isle of Wight is making use of this 'white space' - BBC News - White space between TV signals could save lives at sea


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      Re: EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020

      The BBC article about white space helping ships at sea is a little confused. White space is mainly for providing low power short range internet inland. I fail to see how it helps offshore, and in any case current VHF channels travel far further than low power uhf signals.

      Regarding the main item, the current anticyclone over the UK is causing lots of interchannel interference problems on DTT (not mentioned much in the media because of it being wrongly associated with last weeks DTT channel changes). The Freeview spectrum is already overloaded with too many multiplexers in too small a space, taking another 100MHz away (on top of the 800MHz channels which went after digital switchover) will make it almost unusable - and they will have achieved their goal of killing it off.

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      Re: EU proposals to make 700MHz band ready for wireless broadband in 2020

      Without getting a good look at how their systems work it is hard for me to appreciate the full benefit too.

      Whilst Channel 16 is analogue and heard by everyone, the rescue services will need to communicate some information which they don't want everyone to know. Reception can easily be affected by the movement of the boat in rough weather.

      Knowing how much better digital comms are now, I can only imagine that by using a broadband connection in a similar way to Skype or VoIP, in a conference call, such communications will be clearer and heard by all that need it.

      Some, if not all, DECT phones cut out the speaker when you speak, but Skype doesn't. I haven't used VoIP handsets so can't comment on them.

      The TV Transmitter at Rowridge is in a great location. Its height allows the signals to reach most of the Solent and the rest of the waters surrounding the Isle of Wight.

      PlusNet Fibre since Jan 2021
      Previously Sky Fibre & Sky BB since 2010.

     

     

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