Rural Broadband Could Fill Those White Spaces - Ina Fried - News - AllThingsD
On the one hand, the decision by the Federal Communications Commission last week to approve the first devices to run in the “white spaces” between television channels was a modest one.
The decision initially covers only one product, and is limited to the pilot city of Wilmington, N.C.
But backers of the technology hope those white spaces prove as big a  boost to innovation as the unlicensed spectrum that gave birth to Wi-Fi.
“We see this as a multibillion-dollar industry,” said Rod Dir, CEO of  Spectrum Bridge, the company whose database is a key component of the  white spaces system approved by the FCC.
White spaces, for the uninitiated, are the spectrum spots in between  TV channels. Like the 2.4GHZ spectrum used by several flavors of Wi-Fi,  the white spaces are unlicensed spectrum, meaning any device that agrees  to play nice with others and gains regulatory approval can operate in  the frequency. Devices that are approved to operate in the white spaces  spectrum are required to check in with a database to see which channels  are available. (For more, check out AllThingsD’s handy FAQ post from last week.)
Over time, analysts imagine a range of wireless and wired devices  that can use the white spaces as a sort of “Super Wi-Fi” that can  operate over greater distance and perform better indoors.

Rural Broadband Could Fill Those White Spaces - Ina Fried - News - AllThingsD

On the one hand, the decision by the Federal Communications Commission last week to approve the first devices to run in the “white spaces” between television channels was a modest one.

The decision initially covers only one product, and is limited to the pilot city of Wilmington, N.C.

But backers of the technology hope those white spaces prove as big a boost to innovation as the unlicensed spectrum that gave birth to Wi-Fi.

“We see this as a multibillion-dollar industry,” said Rod Dir, CEO of Spectrum Bridge, the company whose database is a key component of the white spaces system approved by the FCC.

White spaces, for the uninitiated, are the spectrum spots in between TV channels. Like the 2.4GHZ spectrum used by several flavors of Wi-Fi, the white spaces are unlicensed spectrum, meaning any device that agrees to play nice with others and gains regulatory approval can operate in the frequency. Devices that are approved to operate in the white spaces spectrum are required to check in with a database to see which channels are available. (For more, check out AllThingsD’s handy FAQ post from last week.)

Over time, analysts imagine a range of wireless and wired devices that can use the white spaces as a sort of “Super Wi-Fi” that can operate over greater distance and perform better indoors.

Broadcom pushes WiFi to connect Internet of things | GigaOm
Chip giant Broadcom has launched a new WiFi chip module for  manufacturers to use to add connectivity to devices, appliances, energy  management gadgets and other things that less commonly have Internet  connections. The WiFi module, which the company is calling Wireless  Internet Connectivity for Embedded Devices (WICED), contains a  processor, a WiFi radio, a connectivity API, and a software stack.
Broadcom’s move is an effort to use WiFi to tap into the “Internet of  Things,” movement, where every device will one day be able to talk to  each other, beyond just computers and cell phones — think everything  from your car, to sensors throughout your home and office, to your  electricity meter, and even down to tiny objects like the cap of your prescription pills, which could text you and tell you “hey, it’s time to take me now.”

Broadcom pushes WiFi to connect Internet of things | GigaOm

Chip giant Broadcom has launched a new WiFi chip module for manufacturers to use to add connectivity to devices, appliances, energy management gadgets and other things that less commonly have Internet connections. The WiFi module, which the company is calling Wireless Internet Connectivity for Embedded Devices (WICED), contains a processor, a WiFi radio, a connectivity API, and a software stack.

Broadcom’s move is an effort to use WiFi to tap into the “Internet of Things,” movement, where every device will one day be able to talk to each other, beyond just computers and cell phones — think everything from your car, to sensors throughout your home and office, to your electricity meter, and even down to tiny objects like the cap of your prescription pills, which could text you and tell you “hey, it’s time to take me now.”

 MIT project makes smarter mobile Wi-Fi
Your smartphone or tablet's  Wi-Fi radio lives in the moment. When it's time to connect to a hot  spot, all other things being equal, it will attach to the radio that's  the best for it at that instant: the one with the most attractive  combination of signal strength and throughput. But once your device is  on the move, that strategy is far from optimal.
A group at MIT is developing technology that takes actual and predicted  device movement into account when connecting to hotspots, to increase  overall wireless performance on mobile devices. See PDF: Improving Wireless Network Performance Using Sensor Hints.
MIT professor Hari Balakrishnan explains that his team’s  software uses sensors on a device that are otherwise unused when a Wi-Fi  radio is looking for a connection: the GPS sensor and logs,  acceleration sensors, even the compass. From this information, the  device can tell not just where it is, but where it’s going, and it can  then attach to a hotspot that it should be able to stick with for a bit  longer than if it’s just picking one that’s good at the moment. Devices  can also proactively select and modify radio data rates based on  predicted movements.
Source: CNET

 MIT project makes smarter mobile Wi-Fi

Your smartphone or tablet's Wi-Fi radio lives in the moment. When it's time to connect to a hot spot, all other things being equal, it will attach to the radio that's the best for it at that instant: the one with the most attractive combination of signal strength and throughput. But once your device is on the move, that strategy is far from optimal.

A group at MIT is developing technology that takes actual and predicted device movement into account when connecting to hotspots, to increase overall wireless performance on mobile devices. See PDF: Improving Wireless Network Performance Using Sensor Hints.

MIT professor Hari Balakrishnan explains that his team’s software uses sensors on a device that are otherwise unused when a Wi-Fi radio is looking for a connection: the GPS sensor and logs, acceleration sensors, even the compass. From this information, the device can tell not just where it is, but where it’s going, and it can then attach to a hotspot that it should be able to stick with for a bit longer than if it’s just picking one that’s good at the moment. Devices can also proactively select and modify radio data rates based on predicted movements.

Source: CNET
Amsterdam’s  ZonSpots to Provide “Green” WiFi Around the City
The City of Amsterdam is about to install so-called Zonspots (‘Sun Spots’) — small open air sun-powered desks with a shelter on top.  There will be power to plug-in laptops and Wi-Fi, free of charge.
The ZonSpots have a main goal in informing people about alternative energy and are supported by the Amsterdam Smart City program.

Amsterdam’s ZonSpots to Provide “Green” WiFi Around the City

The City of Amsterdam is about to install so-called Zonspots (‘Sun Spots’) — small open air sun-powered desks with a shelter on top. There will be power to plug-in laptops and Wi-Fi, free of charge.

The ZonSpots have a main goal in informing people about alternative energy and are supported by the Amsterdam Smart City program.

Ruckus Smart Antennas May Be Key to Nationwide Wi-Fi | Epicenter | Wired.com
Traditional Wi-Fi routers use omnidirectional antennas, such as the little sticks on the back of Netgear and Linksys routers, which spill out signals equally in all directions. Ruckus’ routers have 19 separate antennas, arranged in a circle on the motherboard, which constantly triangulate the receiver’s location. The router then sends out signals on the antennas that have the best path to a given laptop.  

Ruckus Smart Antennas May Be Key to Nationwide Wi-Fi | Epicenter | Wired.com

Traditional Wi-Fi routers use omnidirectional antennas, such as the little sticks on the back of Netgear and Linksys routers, which spill out signals equally in all directions. Ruckus’ routers have 19 separate antennas, arranged in a circle on the motherboard, which constantly triangulate the receiver’s location. The router then sends out signals on the antennas that have the best path to a given laptop.  

The Wi-Fi Alliance and the HomePlug Powerline Alliance announced an agreement Tuesday to collaborate on applications that allow smart energy grids to interoperate with “connected” homes.

77 percent of people with Wi-Fi-enabled mobile phones are completely or very satisfied with their devices. Among those who have Wi-Fi on their phones, 74 percent use the feature, and 77 percent say they will also seek Wi-Fi connectivity in their next phone. (via Survey: Wi-Fi becoming smartphone must-have | CNET)

77 percent of people with Wi-Fi-enabled mobile phones are completely or very satisfied with their devices. Among those who have Wi-Fi on their phones, 74 percent use the feature, and 77 percent say they will also seek Wi-Fi connectivity in their next phone. (via Survey: Wi-Fi becoming smartphone must-have | CNET)