UK government floats guidelines for UWB services

The government agency that regulates the U.K. telecommunications industry is examining licensing proposals for UWB (ultrawideband) technology but indicated on Thursday that it is leaning towards freeing UWB from licence restrictions.

UWB technology transmits radio signals simultaneously over a wide range of frequencies and can be used in a variety of manners, including high-speed, short-range wireless communication, like WLANs (wireless LANs) and for radar imaging of objects underground or behind walls.

The Office of Communications, Ofcom, said it is consulting with the public on proposals for UWB as part of ongoing discussions within Europe on a harmonized approach to the technology. In April, the European Commission will consider initial proposals on the European Union's approach to UWB adoption across Europe.

Ofcom, based in London, is the U.K. agency responsible for regulating telecommunications, wireless communications services, television and radio.

Ofcom said that though it is proposing that UWB be freed from licence restrictions, any measure it approves would have to avoid harmful interference, particularly to services such as 3G (third-generation) mobile, wireless broadband and radio astronomy.

The closing date for the Ofcom consultation is March 25.

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