Competition for Spectrum Set to Spread to TV Airwaves

by: Steven Towns

The Washington Post reports a six partner coalition including Microsoft, Google, Dell, HP, Intel and Philips, will provide the FCC with a Microsoft-built prototype device today, which they claim can utilize idle TV channels, or whitespace, and beam the Internet to homes and businesses. The device will reportedly undergo months of testing and if it passes FCC scrutiny, it could be in stores by early 2009, according to the coalition. The FCC (and competitors in the telecom and cable industries facing the threat of new entrants) is concerned whether the use of such spectrum would "not bleed outside its designated channels and interfere with existing broadcasts," according to the Post. An FCC commissioner however, is quoted saying, "These devices have the potential to take the success of the WiFi phenomenon to another level." Google's telecom and media counsel in Washington, said the firm is "very interested in finding ways to create platforms for other broadband connectivity."

Sources: Washington Post
Commentary: Internet Service Providers: Is Net Neutrality Hurting or Helping?Cable Will Win the Bandwidth WarsInternet Video: The Evolution From a Push to Pull Economic Model
Stocks/ETFs to watch: Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Dell (NASDAQ:DELL), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ), Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), Philips Electronics (NYSE:PHG). Competitors: AT&T (NYSE:T), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), Time Warner (NYSE:TWX). ETFs: iShares Goldman Sachs Technology (NYSEARCA:IGM)

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