ACA locks up broadband spectrum

The Australian Communications Authority has imposed further restrictions on the use of wireless broadband spectrum, with assignments for the 3575 through to 3710MHz spectrum band "embargoed" until further notice.

According to an ACA statement, the new restriction is needed "to preserve spectrum options for further planning and possible introduction of broadband wireless access systems in this band, particularly in regional areas".

ACA acting chairman, Dr Bob Horton, said that under the embargo, "No further spectrum assignments would be made Australia-wide in the 3575 to 3710MHz band. However, any applications for allocations in the band would be considered individually."

According to the ACA, the spectrum being locked away is within the band "currently used for space-to-Earth satellite communications", and also crosses over with the "3.8GHz band traditionally used for long-haul, point-to-point, fixed communications services".

"The embargo is part of early technical and regulatory planning work, which will include public consultation, for further flexible spectrum access arrangements for the delivery of broadband communications services in regional areas," Horton said.

Horton added the ACA also took "international developments" into consideration including the development of "WiMax standards, and developments earlier this year in this band in the US".

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