New 802.22 Wi-Fi standard released – City-wide Wi-Fi a step closer

| August 8, 2011 | Reply

IEEE has just released a new, official standard for 802.22 Wi-Fi. The new standard can cover 12,000 square miles with just one base station, which is about the same as broadcast radio and television. It will use spectrum including 54MHz to 698MHz – the analog TV spectrum that allowed signals to travel out that far. 802.22 will be able to broadcast data at up to 22Mbpss, 62 miles out from just one single base station, making it easy to provide rural broadband or to blanket cities with municipal Wi-Fi.

IEEE 802.22 is a standard for Wireless Regional Area Network (WRAN) using white spaces in the TV frequency spectrum. The white spaces exist between used channels. The switchover to digital television frees up large areas between about 50 MHz and 700 MHz. Laptops/PCs will transmit data back to the base stations using a small transmitter/receiver base station with an antenna (a beefed up wireless router), which requires a signal strength that’s not nearly as strong as cellular.

The development of IEEE 802.22 WRAN is aimed at bringing broadband access to hard-to-reach rural areas, but can be used in larger cities as well if the demand in bandwidth isn’t too high (maybe subscription based to lower the number of users?).

It is hoped that the new standard will fare better than the WiMax rollout, which hasn’t really taken off here in the U.S.. One of WiMax’s problems is due to the spectrum that it uses – usually in the 2.3GHz to 3.65GHz range, which isn’t very robust in penetrating structures (but can carry very fast speeds).

Now that the standard has been approved, companies can start building things that incorporate 802.22 technology. Check out the press release below.

This new standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRANs) takes advantage of the favorable transmission characteristics of the VHF and UHF TV bands to provide broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. Each WRAN will deliver up to 22 Mbps per channel without interfering with reception of existing TV broadcast stations, using the so-called white spaces between the occupied TV channels. This technology is especially useful for serving less densely populated areas, such as rural areas, and developing countries where most vacant TV channels can be found. IEEE 802.22 incorporates advanced cognitive radio capabilities including dynamic spectrum access, incumbent database access, accurate geolocation techniques, spectrum sensing, regulatory domain dependent policies, spectrum etiquette, and coexistence for optimal use of the available spectrum.




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Co-owner and PR guy for I’m happily married and a father to a wonderful (most of the time) son. I work in the E9-1-1 software/data industry by day and am a tech loving geek in my spare time. I’m interested in all things tech, but am big into Android especially. I dabble in a little of everything – Android development, PC development, web development, etc – but am a master of none (not even close)… But I have fun doing it anyway! =P