back to article Ofcom needs you... to carve up 37GHz of spectrum

Ofcom has launched a public consultation on the management of 37GHz of radio spectrum, looking for better ways to manage licensing of fixed wireless links. The 37GHz runs though 19 blocks from 1.4GHz up to 86GHz, and is currently licensed though a mix of Ofcom management, light licensing (where licensees have to sort out …


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  1. Mage Silver badge

    Perhaps a mess

    But guess who is responsible and will make it worse.

    It's not just about the "price of kit"

    1.4GHz to 2.5GHz is progressively poorer range and Indoor penetration.

    2GHz to 5GHz is progressively no use for Indoor penetration

    3GHz to 10GHz is progressively more line of sight (LOS).

    8GHz to 86GHz is limited to LOS point to point links or very short range.

    There are multiple bands from 1.4GHz upwards for Satellite, Astronomy or High Altitude Platforms, governed by International Treaty. Ofcom and FCC may think they can, but in reality they should not get "creative" on these.

    S, L, C, Ku, Ka etc bands.

    2.4GHz and 5.8GHz are pan European Licence Free. "Free for all"

    1.8GHz., 2.1GHz, 2.3GHz 2.5GHz, 3.5/3.6GHz and 10.2GHz 10.5GHz are Pan-European Mobile phone, Mobile Data or Fixed Data.

    1.9GHz Pan European DECT

    Most of it Ofcom has to do the same as rest of Europe. They are too interested in minimising their work and maximising their revenue. Not enough interested in Spectrum protection or the Consumer or value of National Infrastructure. (PLT /Homeplug / CE mark enforcement on CFLs and SMPSUs ?)

    Why Start at 1.4GHz rather than 790MHz?

    Note: Staring into a live waveguide gives you Cataracts, but not cancer.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Would it be too imposing...

    ... to ask what the various bands are good for, in terms of spectrum properties (range, bandwidth, suspectibility to fog, rain,snow, and so on), how difficult it's to make kit for it, and historical use (current and previous users)? Or are you supposed to know that already? I'd think it's a splendid task for ofcom to kick off such a thing and to keep a public repository of not just the latter, but the former two too.

    1. Jess--

      in general the higher the frequency the nearer to useless it is for long distance comms without using highly directional antenna (dish etc)

      in general it seems to me that each time you double a frequency you half the usable range (unless you increase transmitter power)

      also worth noting is that as you get higher in frequency it becomes harder and more expensive to source components that are capable of operating at those frequencies reliably.

  3. Lxbr

    Why is North-South more popular than East-West

    Can someone explain why North-South directional signals are more popular than East-West? For the sake of argument, assume I know nothing about radio engineering or physics...

    1. Bill Ray (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Why is North-South more popular than East-West

      Oddly enough it has nothing to do with radio, but the fact that our country isn't square and most of the international routing is via London, so links running down the country are more popular than those running across it.

      The same thing applies to roads, and railways, sorry it wasn't explicit in the piece.

      The point is that some routes are more popular than others, so Ofcom wants to know if it should charge more for the popular ones.


  4. Anonymous Coward

    One thing stands out

    "Not that all of them are very valuable. The value of radio spectrum is most-closely related to the cost of the equipment capable of using it - 3G mobile phones operating at 2.1GHz are cheap as chips, so the 2.1GHz band is expensive, whereas kit capable of doing anything at 60GHz is very expensive, so the spectrum is given away free."

    Whilst the kit today is expensive, it will only get cheaper as the other takeups of frequency have shown. Ok it's range has limit use with most technologies today but it does have it's use, even if small meshs knitted together with the shorter ranges.

    Also some standard highquality/precision time signal would be nice, I know we have such things atm but something a bit more acurate in the decimal range could only be more useful than not.

    Still whatever happens, there will be drama and popcorn ahead.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Standard MO

    " has to pay for a licence – but it comes with no guarantees of exclusivity".

    Yes, that sounds like government. A steady income, in return for absolutely nothing.

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