TV White Space

South Africa: ICASA, CSIR Collaborate With Tech Solutions Provider To Drive TV White Space Projects

Indigo Broadband, a South African broadband technology solutions provider, has revealed that it is working with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and telecoms regulator the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) to drive various pre-commercial TV white space (TVWS) projects in SA.

Indigo Broadband appointed last week by the authorised Sub-Saharan distributor of TVWS network systems that was developed by the California-based Carlson Wireless.

Television white spaces are the unused frequencies in the wireless spectrum between television broadcasts.

In 2018, ICASA published final regulations on the use of TVWS, but the commercial deployment of the technology is still relatively unknown.

The CSIR has developed a technology that identifies and uses TVWS channels for broadband services without interfering with adjacent primary licensed services. This co-existence between TVWS networks and TV broadcast networks is made possible through a CSIR-developed tool called the white spaces spectrum database.

African countries have, over the years, been criticised by champions of TVWS frequencies for underutilising the technology that could improve Internet access on the continent.

However, South Africa has been piloting some TVWS projects. 

In the past, Microsoft, Google, Wireless Access Providers Association and the CSIR led successful TV white space trials.

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