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White space 'Smart City' network goes up in Wilmington, North Carolina

Nilay Patel
02.26.10
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White space internet just took another step on its long, vaporous journey: in addition to the 916-person trial in tiny Claudville, Virginia kicked off last year, Spectrum Bridge just launched its first large-scale "Smart City" network in Wilmington, North Carolina. If you'll recall, white spaces are the bits of spectrum in between TV frequencies, and a whole host of heavy hitters including Microsoft and Google pushed the FCC to open them up for data usage after years of lobbying and comically failed tests. Wilmington was selected for the big trial since it was the first community to switch completely to DTV broadcasting, and the city's using the new network for a variety of infrastructure tasks, including traffic camera monitoring, free WiFi in city parks, and remote wetlands monitoring stations. There's also more to come, including medical uses and more broadband for schools as time goes on. We're assuming NAB is totally SulkyFace5000 right now, but we've got to hand it to the White Spaces Coalition -- after all that talk, they've finally gotten up and running in a larger community. Anyone in Wilmington care to chime in and tell us how it's working?

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