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The auto industry said it will pose a risk to vehicle-to-vehicle technologies that need this wireless spectrum

Automakers aren't too happy about a recent U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposal, which uses part of the wireless spectrum assigned to vehicle-to-vehicle technology for Wi-Fi instead.

The FCC announced that it plans to free up 195 MHz of spectrum in the 5 GHz band for unlicensed use in an effort to address the U.S.' spectrum crisis. This could potentially lead to Wi-Fi speeds faster than 1 gigabit per second.

The FCC voted unanimously on the topic Wednesday of this week.

However, the auto industry said this would take away previously reserved wireless spectrum for vehicle-to-vehicle technology -- which has the potential to save lives.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which is a trade group consisting of Detroit's Big Three Automakers, Toyota, Volkswagen AG and some other auto companies, is among those who are upset by the FCC's latest proposal.

"[Automakers] already invested heavily in the research and development of these safety critical systems, and our successes have been based on working closely with our federal partners," said the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "It is imperative that, as we move forward, we do adequate research and testing on potential interference issues that could arise from opening up this band to unlicensed users and that the commission not rush to judgment before this important analysis can be done."

The Intelligent Transportation Society of America added that "the desire of the commission to move forward expeditiously, while cautioning against putting near-term life-saving innovations like connected vehicle technology at risk in the pursuit of future Wi-Fi applications."

The auto industry isn't the only one concerned with the new proposal. Certain government agencies -- like the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) -- see commercial users jumping on bands used by these agencies and posing a potential risk in doing so. 

Source: The Detroit News

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5GHz? Really?
By 0ldman on 2/22/2013 6:19:46 PM , Rating: 2
5GHz has crappy propagation, it is blocked or absorbed by almost everything out there.

I have a 24 mile 5GHz link, several 5GHz broadcasts. Unless you can see your target you will not connect at 5GHz 99% of the time. Couple that with the power limitations on the first 3 sections of the band, the first being indoor only and the second and third 1W peak output, sometimes you can see the tower and still can't connect.

I really don't think opening the band further for WIFI is going to have any affect on a car rolling down the road.

RE: 5GHz? Really?
By FaaR on 2/23/2013 7:54:10 AM , Rating: 2
I really don't think opening the band further for WIFI is going to have any affect on a car rolling down the road.

While you make a compelling point, however these days many people have notebook computers, smartphones and tablet computers that contain wifi transcievers capable of creating their own access point and will thus be broadcasting stuff all the time, and frequently take these things with them as they move about in open urban environments.

Having tons of wifi access points in motion, in line of sight of perhaps hundreds of cars, will not exactly make things easier for intra-vehicular communication systems if all of these devices butt heads with each other by sharing the same spectrum.

"This week I got an iPhone. This weekend I got four chargers so I can keep it charged everywhere I go and a land line so I can actually make phone calls." -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg
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