What Should Telecommunicators Know About Spectrum?

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If you are part of the telecommunications industry, it’s likely that you’ve heard the word “spectrum” a few times, especially lately; but what do you need to know about spectrum? “It’s a finite and valuable resource, all spectrum holders must use their bands for the best and highest purposes,” according to the CTIA. When it comes to towers, they are needed to enhance coverage, increase capacity, decrease network load, and enhance spectral efficiency. This is why expedient tower siting is necessary. The FCC has been working to improve spectrum efficiency by: allocating more public safety frequency bands, increasing available communication channels within limited spectrum bands, improving spectrum management processes to enhance efficiency, and promoting technology advancement, such as software-defined radio and cognitive radio. (Source: Understanding the Basics: What Telecommunicators Need to Know About Spectrum” by Christine Phelps.) “In order to meet the demand, CTIA and its members are advocating for more licensed spectrum. Since some spectrum band holders have underutilized or unused spectrum, it’s logical to move those users and auction the finite and valuable spectrum.In the meantime, wireless carriers are investing billions of dollars – and at record amounts – to enhance their networks and make use of the spectrum they previously purchased at auction by adding more towers and antennas to improve coverage and capacity, but these are merely short-term solutions to the anticipated data usage explosion,” according to the CTIA)

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