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Experiment could portend a broader rollout of high-frequency networks to reduce congestion

Google Inc.'s (GOOG) headquarters may be the testbed for a new kind of high frequency, dense wireless network that will require kinds of devices not typically sold on the U.S. market today.  The producer of the world's top smartphone platform in unit sales last week filed a pair of documents with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to make use of the 2524-2625 band.

Currently, U.S. high-speed networks, such as LTE, use either the 700-800 MHz band or the 1700-1900 MHz band.  Meanwhile Europe, Asia, and South America have all looked to the 2500-2600 MHz band for high-speed data traffic.

The growing use of this higher frequency band means that Google won't necessarily need to bake up brand new devices for its mobile network, which, according to the document, will initially consist of 5 to 10 base stations serving up to 40 user devices.

Currently, the 2500-2600 MHz region is set aside by the FCC in most areas for use by the Educational Broadband Service (EBS). Clearwire Corp. (CLWR) currently owns most of the reuse rights to this band.

Google HQ
Google's Mountain View campus will soon be home to a new experimental high-frequency wireless network.  [Image Source: Bernard Andre]

This is by no means Google's first experimental deployment of a wireless network, though it's the first major effort in the cellular space. Google previously offered up free Wi-Fi to his headquarters hometown of Mountain View, Calif.  More recently, it jumped onboard a plan to provide free Wi-Fi to New York City's Chelsea neighborhood. Google has also offered free Wi-Fi seasonally at some airports.  Google has also trialed a high-speed fiber-based broadband internet and telephone service in Kansas City.

Google is rumored to be in talks with Dish Network Corp. (DISH) or other cable internet/television providers to offer broader deployments of fiber optic broadband and wireless services.  Thus far, though, all of Google's efforts remain in the experimental stage, with no announced plans for a broad commercial rollout.

Sources: FCC [1], [2]





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