Leftover White Space Spectrum Used to Provide Wireless Broadband in Isolated Areas

There is more than one way to bring high-speed broadband to an area…

The Scottish island of Arran will take advantage of “leftover” spectrum (white space) from the switch to digital TV to improve broadband access and speed. A partnership between the broadband service Nominet and broadband campaign group Broadway Partners, a UK broadband promoter, have rolled out for the first time in Europe a white space-based broadband service for Arran’s 5,000 residents. . In January 2016, high-speed fiber broadband was installed past about 2,000 homes and business in Arran and nearby Cumbrae as part of a £146 million investment that was funded by the Scottish government. However, installing fiber in the island’s sparsely populated areas such as its west coast was prohibitively expensive. That area will be the first to get white space broadband and it will be more widely deployed in 2017.

Michael Armitage, founding director of Broadband Partners (http://www.broadwaypartners.co.uk), said, “TV white space has proved its mettle, cutting through hard to reach rural forested areas on Arran which, in fixed wireless terms, is pretty much unheard of. This technology will be a powerful tool in the drive to deliver affordable broadband access for all communities throughout Scotland and abroad.”

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