Nominet begins its part in Ofcom’s TV Whitespace pilot

1st July 2014

Nominet has passed the qualification stage to become a database provider that can operate in Ofcom’s TV Whitespace pilot in the UK. TV white space is the part of the radio spectrum freed up by the UK analogue TV switch off and planning is underway for a pilot of innovative white space technology in the UK, which is among the first of its kind in Europe.

The pilot will use the frequencies and channels freed up by the switch to digital television broadcasting in the UK. It is proposed that usage of this part of the spectrum will become license-exempt, but only if certain strict transmission conditions are met which can vary from location to location and also over time.

Adam Leach, Director of Research and Development at Nominet comments: “TV white space is an exciting new technology and being able to make use of this dynamic spectrum allocation requires a contactable TV white space database. The available set of frequencies varies so the database that we have developed performs complex calculations based on a number of factors and tells TV white space devices which frequencies they can use, and for how long.

“This kind of technology can bring connectivity over large distances and could really fuel the growth of the Internet of Things in the UK. We’re delighted to have passed this first phase of the pilot and we’re looking forward to contributing further to Ofcom’s innovative developments in this area.”

During the pilot we will be assisting Ofcom with end-to-end testing of the overall framework for TV Whitespace. A number of companies, including Nominet, have been preparing to take part in the pilot, either as database, device or service providers; providing input and expertise on coexistence testing; offering trial locations; and volunteering as pilot users.