Companies lobbying the Federal Communications Commission to access unused spectrum known as "white spaces" won a big victory on Oct. 15 when Chairman Kevin Martin threw his weight behind the proposal, citing findings in an FCC report that was issued the same day, CNET reports. Martin held a press conference with reporters early in the day in which he pledged his support for the use of the white space spectrum and announced that the issue would be up for vote at the FCC’s next open meeting on November 4. Martin has long been in favor of opening up additional spectrum that can be used to offer wireless broadband services. The FCC finished testing several proof-of-concept devices in real-world tests this summer to see if companies can develop products that use buffer spectrum between licensed broadcast channels. This spectrum, known as "white space," sits between broadcast TV channels in the 150 MHz to 700 MHz spectrum bands. The commission’s newly released report states that devices with geo-location and sensing technologies could be used with some conditions. But the report said devices with sensing-only technology would have to undergo another round of testing within the FCC labs. Several technology companies, including Motorola, Microsoft, and Google, have been lobbying the FCC for more than a year to open up these channels, which would provide between 300 MHz and 400 MHz of unlicensed spectral capacity throughout the country that could be used by anyone. But incumbent spectrum license holders, such as TV broadcasters and cell phone operators, say wireless devices that access this unlicensed spectrum will cause interference in the neighboring spectrum bands…

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