Google unveils «Wi-Fi 2.0» plan

26 Mar 2008

Google has unveiled plans to taking advantage of soon-to-be-available broadcast airwaves to run wireless devices equipped with its Android software.

According to a Reuters report, the Internet search giant has filed its comments before the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which details how next-generation wireless devices can access the Web through the 'white space' between television channels.

The white-space airwaves could become available in February 2009, when TV broadcasters switch from analog to digital signals. A Google executive called the plan 'Wi-Fi 2.0 or Wi-Fi on steroids', the report said.

Google wants to take advantage of the white-space spectrum to operate Internet-ready mobile phones and other devices that run its Android operating system.

A counsel for Google said these Wi-Fi devices could eventually offer data transmission speeds of billions of bits per second - far faster than the millions of bits per second available on most current broadband networks.

Consumers could watch movies on wireless devices and do other things that are currently difficult on slower networks, Google said.

This plan, however, faces opposition from US broadcast networks that fear this will cause interference with TV signals.

Google said 'spectrum-sensing technologies' could be used that would automatically check to see whether a channel was open before using it, thereby avoiding interference with other devices, the Reuters report says.

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