ESPN, NFL invite FCC to test white-space devices during football season

ESPN and the National Football League have invited the FCC to field test white-space devices under "real world" conditions during the 2008-2009 football season. The NFL and a number of sports teams have voiced their concern about potential interference white-space devices may pose to wireless microphones used to broadcast their events.

The FCC to date has been testing white-space devices in a lab but has said it will undergo another round of testing in the field within the next few weeks.

"We are offering our assistance, expertise, access to facilities and equipment and other resources so that the Commission, including the Office of Engineering and Technology (OET), can conduct field testing of the potential impact of [white space devices] on wireless microphone operations during a live sporting event," ESPN and the NFL stated in a filing with the FCC.  They further offered to hold testing at the Baltimore Raven's M&T Bank Stadium and the Washington Redskin's FedExField in Landover, Md., which are close to the FCC's headquarters.

ESPN and the NFL indicated they "strongly support" the FCC's repeated commitments to ensure that all users are protected from interference by white space devices. "As such the conditions at these events provide an excellent opportunity to stage a meaningful, real-world test under actual operating conditions as they exist in a sports stadium to ensure that there is no resulting ‘harmful interference' to wireless microphones."

For more:
- read this release

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Professional sports leagues concerned about white space spectrum. White-space story
Microsoft: FCC's tests validate white space. Microsoft story