FCC Releases Orders on Unlicensed White Spaces, Microphone Operations Access

The Commission has released two orders recently adopted:

The Report and Order on Unlicensed White Space Devices in the Television Bands/600 MHz Band (the “Order”) makes certain changes to the Part 15 rules for unlicensed operations in the TV bands, including fixed and personal/portable white space devices and unlicensed wireless microphones.  The Order also adopts technical and operational rules for unlicensed devices and wireless microphones in the 600 MHz guard bands, including the duplex gap, and in the 600 MHz band that will be repurposed for new wireless services as a result of the incentive auction.  The Part 15 rules are also modified to account for white space databases, including protecting areas where new 600 MHz service licenses commence operation and areas used by incumbent services on channel 37.

The Report and Order on Promoting Access for Wireless Microphone Operations (the “Report and Order”), seeks to provide additional opportunities for wireless microphone operations in the TV bands by allowing greater use of the VHF channels and more co-channel operations without the need for coordination where use would not cause harmful interference to TV service.  The Report and Order also provides new opportunities for wireless microphone operations to access spectrum in other frequencies, specifically, the 169-172 MHz band and the 944-952 MHz band, along with opening up portions of three other sets of spectrum bands – the 941-944 MHz and 952-960 MHz bands (on each side of the 944-952 MHz band), the 1435-1525 MHz band, and the 6875-7125 MHz band – for sharing under specified conditions.

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