Ben Ward (MLL Telecom)
Whitespace spectrum is a new way of offering large amounts of spectrum where the owner currently doesn’t or can’t use it. Opportunistic spectrum sharing allows swathes of TV and other spectrum currently lying unused to be accessed by users on a geographical and temporary basis (eg. in a specific location for a couple of minutes or months) by using coordination databases rather than auctions and long-term ownership. This spectrum has characteristics ideal for the Internet of Things and wireless sensor networks - long range, low power, good penetration, good bandwidth. For the UK, access to spectrum by entites other than telcos willing to bid billions of pounds is an important step in our development as a country and society. A regulator taking steps to empower the individual is surprising and encouraging, so let’s use it before it’s given away.