Waves of Innovation: Spectrum Allocation in the Age of the Mobile Internet

May 17, 2011

For many of us the term "spectrum policy" has to do with allocating relatively small parts of the radio frequency space to specific applications such as AM and FM radio, television, and public safety. It is a notion more apt for a time when we watched TV over the air and made phone calls over a wireline network. Today these patterns of usage are reversed, and we live in a world where mobile broadband has emerged as a general-purpose technology that can support a wide range of applications. We need a general-purpose spectrum and a spectrum policy that is ready for this and future technological advances. Join ITIF for an exploration of lessons learned in wireless networking that impact spectrum assignment policies and contemporary issues in spectrum policy, such as the development of 3G and 4G networks, the rise of Wi-Fi and other unlicensed technologies, the role of microwave, the impact of dynamic spectrum allocation, the utility of spectrum auctions, secondary uses, and secondary markets.