Spectrum Scarcity Sparks Need for Regulatory Support and Research

4G Americas Outlines Benefits and Recommendations for Spectrum Sharing

BELLEVUE, WA--(Marketwired - October 14, 2014) - The never ending demand for mobile data and ubiquitous connectivity in today's wireless world is driving service providers towards network improvements for spectral efficiencies as well as significant investments in new technology resources to densify their networks. However, those advancements alone are not adequate to meet the challenges posed by future mobile data traffic when only limited spectrum is available. Regulatory support and industry research is needed to determine the optimal use of spectrum resources. 4G Americas, a wireless industry trade association representing the 3GPP family of technologies, today published the white paper, Spectrum Sharing, on the benefits of innovation in regulatory policy and its ability to provide a potentially helpful tool for the shortfall of available spectrum resources.

"Like fish need water to survive, the mobile connected world relies on exclusive licensed spectrum as its fuel for growth; however, key stakeholders are aware that limited spectrum is a factor which stunts significant advancements," stated Chris Pearson, President of 4G Americas. "We see an excellent opportunity for government regulators and the wireless industry in the region to participate in positive dialogue regarding the best practices for spectrum sharing that will benefit the connected society in which we live."

The paper discusses key regulatory and technical factors that should be considered when developing successful spectrum sharing policies and explores spectrum sharing mechanisms using coordinated, uncoordinated and hybrid approaches. It also details the challenges of spectrum sharing, including interference management between disparate systems sharing same or adjacent spectrum bands. The paper highlights the need for further technology research, development, testing and refinement of models to ensure that it provides sufficient protection to the primary users of the spectrum while providing beneficial new broadband capacity. Spectrum shared properly by incumbents and mobile operators will help to maximize the use of this limited resource.

Spectrum Sharing recommends a regulatory regime that provides greater certainty and predictability to prospective licensees in order to help ensure that the spectrum is put to its highest and most productive use. For sharing to be successful, the sharing environment must be well understood, commercially feasible and suitable for the provision of the envisioned services.

"The proper and best use of spectrum is a hot topic in the current era of mobile technology," commented Neeti Tandon, Lead Member of Technical Staff (LMTS) at AT&T, and 4G Americas work group leader and editor of the paper. "Spectrum sharing is an important option to consider for the mobile broadband capacity challenge; however, regulatory support and substantial additional research and development efforts are needed to move these technologies into mainstream use."

As spectrum sharing opens doors to innovation, solutions to issues concerning spectrum use continue to be the center of discussion within the mobile technology industry. 4G Americas joins the effort to participate in the conversation of pertinent issues and developments affecting spectrum across the Americas region at The 4th Annual Americas Spectrum Management Conference taking place on November 12 & 13, 2014, in Washington D.C. 4G Americas President, Chris Pearson, will be speaking at a session on "Incentive Auctions: Overcoming the key policy and technology challenges".

Spectrum Sharing was written collaboratively by members of 4G Americas and is available for free download at: www.4gamericas.org.

About 4G Americas: Unifying the Americas through Mobile Broadband Technology
4G Americas is an industry trade organization composed of leading telecommunications service providers and manufacturers. The organization's mission is to advocate for and foster the advancement and full capabilities of the 3GPP family of mobile broadband technologies, including LTE-Advanced, throughout the ecosystem's networks, services, applications and wirelessly connected devices in the Americas. 4G Americas contributes to the success of 3GPP technologies and their No. 1 place in the region. 4G Americas is headquartered in Bellevue, Wash. More information is available at www.4gamericas.org or www.facebook.com/4gamericas and www.twitter.com/4gamericas.

4G Americas' Board of Governors members include: Alcatel-Lucent, América Móvil, AT&T, Cable & Wireless, Cisco, CommScope, Entel, Ericsson, HP, Intel, Mavenir, Nokia, Openwave Mobility, Qualcomm, Rogers, Sprint, T-Mobile USA and Telefónica.