The transition to digital television offers a new and important opportunity to take advantage of an underutilized but valuable public resource — the empty broadcast TV channels known as “white spaces” — to foster universal, affordable broadband Internet services. When the DTV transition ends in early 2009, every one of the nation's 210 TV markets will have 15 to 40 unassigned and vacant channels reserved for broadcasting, but not in use. Below is a summary of our analysis for a sampling of media markets across the country. Vacant TV channels are perfectly suited for WiFi and other unlicensed wireless Internet services. Access to vacant TV channels would facilitate a market for low-cost, high-capacity, mobile wireless broadband networks. Using these white spaces, the wireless broadband industry could deliver Internet access to every American household for as little as $10 a month, by some estimates.
The full version of this document (69 pp.), as well as a summary (2 pp.), are available in the attached PDF documents below.