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Singapore drafts regulatory framework for UWB

Posted: 26 Sep 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:UWB? Singapore? regulatory framework?

The Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) of Singapore has proposed a regulatory framework for devices using UWB technology. The framework is expected to be gazetted by the end of the year.

UWB is a wireless technology that works by broadcasting signals over a large spectrum, allowing for data transfer speeds of up to 480Mbps. UWB is also valued for its low power consumption, thus making it particularly suited for portable wireless consumer electronics. Commercially, it can also be used in asset tagging and tracking, and for anticollision systems for vehicles.

"The proposed framework will enable UWB players to deploy this emerging technology in Singapore easily," said Leong Keng Thai, IDA deputy chief executive and director-general for telecoms. "It will open up new avenues of growth for our infocomm sector. We can expect the introduction and eventual proliferation of UWB applications to bring about greater benefits for consumers and businesses, with its qualities of fast data transfer at low power and cost."

IDA has been supporting compatibility studies and trials for UWB, locally and internationally, since 2003.

The proposed regulatory framework is the outcome of a public consultation done in March, which sought industry feedback on the licensing approach, emission limits and frequency bands for UWB devices. Fourteen industry players made submissions, and generally supported IDA's proposals.

In developing the UWB regulatory framework, IDA sought to balance facilitating adoption of this emerging technology with the need to ensure that it does not interfere or disrupt existing radio-communication services. As such, a set of technical specifications and operating conditions for UWB devices has been defined, to be aligned with international standards such as those set by Europe's Electronic Communications Committee.

Framework highlights
Significant points in the proposed regulatory framework include:

? UWB devices that comply with IDA's technical specifications and emission limits will be exempted from licensing. This will allow keen industry players to develop and commercialize UWB devices with greater ease. Generally, most UWB consumer products from places like Japan and Europe can enter the Singapore market without the need for a licence.

? Users of UWB devices that operate out of the emission limits will be allowed, but only by exception on a case-by-case basis and is subject to IDA's licence approval, so as to safeguard existing radio-communication services.

Details on the regulatory framework for devices using UWB technology can be found at the IDA Website.

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