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Worldwide experts reveal the growing need for spectrum access

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On day one of the Global Summit, John M Cioffi, CEO and chairman of the board, ASSIA, announced results on the state of Wi-Fi in North America and Europe. In both regions, Wi-Fi is growing in the 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz bands. Wi-Fi already needs the 6 GHz spectrum in North America to avoid quality of experience (QoE) limitations on video for work from home, remote health care, video entertainment and to justify any fiber-to-home infrastructure investment. According to the study, North America already faces congestion issues and Europe will in 6 months. Furthermore, the report demonstrates that the next generation of applications will require very low latency, which is sensitive to spectrum “quality”.

“The implementation of unlicensed access for Wi-Fi is useful for everyone; for countries that already have broad fiber penetration as shown in ASSIA’s study, as well as for those that still lack sufficient fixed connectivity. In these, many citizens that do not have affordable solutions for broadband access at home rely on public Wi-Fi hotspots to access the internet or on the solutions provided by wireless internet service providers that mostly use unlicensed spectrum,” said Martha Suarez, president of the DSA. “ASSIA brings to the forefront the existing and future demand for spectrum which we must act upon today to enable high-quality Wi-Fi in the future.”

Chris Szymanski, director of product marketing, Broadcom also gave a demonstration on the readiness of the ecosystem for Wi-Fi 6E. Extending to the Asia Pacific region, Dr. Ir. Ismail from the Ministry of ICT Indonesia spoke about the priorities for increasing broadband access and how they are progressing spectrum sharing.

Regulators from various countries have given updates as well on their implementation of spectrum sharing frameworks and priorities. Shalini Periyalwar from ISED in Canada highlighted the recent achievement of Canada’s decision to approve license-exempt use in the 6 GHz band to support the growth of Wi-Fi and IoT devices with greater access to the spectrum. The decision from ISED Canada is outstanding because it is the first country in the world that approved the three use cases in the band: very low power portable devices, low power indoor devices, and indoor and outdoor standard power devices.

Javier Juárez Mojica, Commissioner of IFT also spoke about Mexico’s progress with opening the 6 GHz band. A public consultation is currently underway regarding the technical operating conditions for unlicensed access to 1200 MHz in the band.

More support for the 6 GHz band came from Pavel Sistek, head of policy and strategy unit of the Czech Telecommunication Office who said they will support studies in Europe on license-exempt access to the upper part of the 6 GHz band.

The final sessions of the Global Summit explored the economic benefits of flexible spectrum sharing networks and gave local ISPs an opportunity to give insight into how regulators can best work with the industry to build digital economies providing broadband access to those that need it the most.