Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Television's Switch from Analog to Digital Creates More Space for the Internet

You may have overheard something recently about a 700MHz Wireless Spectrum auction. Yeah! ...what was that all about?

The FCC ruled that Television in the United States will officially switch from analog to digital on February 19, 2009.

While the old analog signal will be rendered useless for TV broadcasts, the radio waves are still very capable of broadcasting other services - most importantly, high-speed wireless Internet. As you can imagine, telecommunications companies all wanted access to the analog signal, as it would expand their broadband Internet offerings.

The FCC divided the wireless spectrum into five "blocks", and auctioned them off on January 24, 2008. Verizon won the most valuable C-Block, which offers the fastest frequency. Blocks A, B and E were all divvied up amongst other companies. The D-Block will be reserved for public safety broadcasts as it did not meet its reserve price.

What does this mean for all of us Internet junkies? Not only will the U.S. have a super-fast wireless alternative to DSL and Cable modems, but we should also see faster, more reliable Internet service on mobile phones. Heck, maybe we'll even see a price drop! Wishful thinking, I know :)

Personally, I'm intrigued by this, but how about you? What do you think about the Internet being broadcast over TV waves?

Source: Gizmodo

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