DOST touts free Wi-Fi project as PH hosts global summit on spectrum access

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This year?s Dynamic Spectrum Alliance Summit, which is co-hosted by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) ICT Office and the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), provided the perfect platform for the DOST to announce its national free WiFi project.


The initiative aims to accelerate the government?s efforts in enhancing Internet accessibility for Filipinos to accelerate economic, social and educational opportunities and reduce the growing ?digital divide? under the overarching e-Filipino Program of the DOST ICT Office.

On the first day of the global summit, Prof. H Nwana, executive director of the Dynamic Spectrum Alliance, along with delegates from five continents, stressed that complementary and alternative technology ecosystems ? such as enabled by dynamic spectrum access ? will be needed in order for the world?s governments to connect the four billion unconnected people worldwide and accommodate the emerging Internet of Things.

Speaking at the summit in Manila, which is being held in May 6-8, Prof. Nwana emphasized that many regulators around the globe are already taking action; however he hopes others will rapidly follow suit. The first day of the summit featured product announcements, as well as new regulatory proceedings.

Liew Wong Huat of StarHub in Singapore announced the formation of a new regional organization, the Asia Pacific Spectrum Innovation Group (APSIG), whose mission is to foster more awareness of dynamic spectrum and to support countries in the region with the development of dynamic spectrum polices and regulation.

APSIG will work with the Dynamic Spectrum Alliance on promoting the adoption of TV white space in both private and public sectors, and assist regional regulators with developing consistent regulatory policies around TV white space technologies. Huat also announced that StarHub will partner with SpectrumBridge to implement a geo-location database solution.

The role of model rules was a central focus of the summit, with lively discussions taking place and acting as a catalyst for the development of dynamic spectrum regulation in a number of countries.

Henry Kanor, director of Engineering, National Communication Authority (NCA), the Ghanaian communication regulator, expressed enthusiastic support for the development of dynamic spectrum in Ghana, citing its potential to deliver services in areas unserved by the existing market and to catalyze economic development.

He went on to report that they have issued a number of authorizations for the use of dynamic spectrum. Bu Woro Indah Widiastuti, senior technology advisory to the Minister for Technology, Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT), Indonesia, credited Microsoft?s support for a dynamic spectrum pilot in Indonesia, which was the catalyst for a national strategic approach to dynamic spectrum implementations. Nwana was also invited to the Indonesian MCIT to discuss dynamic spectrum access further.

?Monumental activity is underway as the global dynamic spectrum access movement continues to grow,? said Prof. Nwana,. ?Today, we have been able to address many misconceptions surrounding dynamic spectrum access and as such, spectrum policy thinking is most definitely moving up the agenda for regulators and policy makers.?

A host of new dynamic spectrum technologies were announced at the Summit, including Aviacomm, whose new dynamic spectrum mesh network has already been rolled out in the Philippines, in partnership with a local ISP (FAST), and offers speeds of 50mbps, serving a community of 7,000 students and their families.

Adaptrum, Mediatek, Carlson Wireless and 6Harmonics also announced new generation products which are scheduled for delivery in 2015/2016.

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