FCC Approves New Spectrum for 5.8 GHz Unlicensed Operation

At its open meeting last Thursday, the FCC approved a Report and Order allocating an additional 255 MHz of spectrum in the 5.470-5.725 GHz band for unlicensed devices. This brings the U.S. allocation in line with changes made at the 2003 World Radio Conference and with an agreement reached with the U.S. Department of Defense and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Unlicensed National Information Infrastructure (U-NII) devices operating in the 5.250-5.350 GHz and 5.470-5.725 GHz bands will have to employ dynamic frequency selection and transmit power control to avoid causing interference to federal government users of the spectrum.

According to the FCC's News Release announcing approval of the Report and Order, "the additional available spectrum for U-NII devices will enable continued growth and innovation in wireless broadband services, including services offered by wireless Internet service providers."