RuralConnect, claiming to be the first commercially available radio networking system to deliver the capabilities of TV white-space broadband to Wireless Internet Service Providers (WISPs), has been unveiled by partners Carlson and Neul.

The two say RuralConnect “will give users up to 16 Mbps of bandwidth for each available vacant TV channel and unmatched ability to make long range, non-line-of-sight links. Due to its outstanding propagation characteristics, UHF signals can travel through walls and other obstacles. Line of sight is not needed to the subscriber’s home.”

RuralConnect also could help WISPs transfer more data at higher data rates, driving additional revenue. Depending on the area, as many as 20 channels are available, increasing the amount of non-line-of-sight capable spectrum available by a factor of 10.

Concurrently, Carlson is launching a line of omnidirectional and sectoral, high-gain, base-station antennas designed specifically for TV white-space broadband.

Comments Jim Carlson, CEO at Carlson, “We have the regulatory experience, tactical partnerships and pre-emptive technology to successfully deliver this market-disruptive product. RuralConnect is a proprietary combination of Carlson’s hardware and Neul’s software, resulting in an affordable, high-performance system that is attracting the attention of investors globally.”

Adds Luke D’Arcy, vice president/Marketing at Neul, “The outstanding propagation characteristics of white-space signals means that operators can to serve customers they cannot reach with existing wireless technology. The capacity available allows pioneering WISPs to offer all customers faster plans that beat ADSL based competition. And this is possible without investing in new tower sites, spectrum licenses or high-priced network equipment, boosting profitable growth.”

Samples and development kits are available now, and volume shipments will begin in the second quarter. Carlson and Neul will be demonstrating RuralConnect at ISPAmerica in Florida this week

In related white-space news, Microsoft and Adaptrum recently demonstrated white-space "Super Wi-Fi" technology in Uruguay, showcasing real-world capabilities of the technology on two channels (19 and 26) assigned by the Uruguayan spectrum-regulation agency URSEC.

The demonstration system included an Adaptrum TV white-space base station and an Adaptrum TV white-space client station interacting with Microsoft Research’s prototype TV white-space database. The base station is connected to the Internet, and a white-space connection was established between the base station and the client station using the assigned channels, allowing the client side devices to stream live HD movies from Netflix, to make Skype calls and to browse the Internet all through the TV white-space connection.

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