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Super wifi maybe?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Suwaneeguy, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. Suwaneeguy

    Feb 19, 2014
    Likes Received:
    What ever happened to the super wifi thing anyway?
    After it was required for all broadcast tv stations to use UHF, there was talk of opening up those frequencies
    for use as Super Wifi.
    To my knowledge, this hasn't even been developed.
    So I was thinking, why could those frequencies also be put to use for RCMA?
    Ok, you're gonna say you need a super long antenna and that. No you don't.
    I used to be heavily involved in citizen band radio (27mhz) and had used "rubber duckies" many times.
    These antenna are no bigger than you see on a router.
    With the super low frequency, you also get a longer range for the same power.
    If a 200mw signal can have a range of 600 feet at 802ghz, then a 200mw signal at 60mhz might have a 2 mile or more range.

    Anyone know what the future is for super wifi?
  2. derrickduff

    Feb 21, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I wouldn't doubt there are companies out there just waiting for more freq ranges to open up for use. And then there are some companies (Comcast / Time Warner, Verizon) that are perfectly happy with throttling bandwidth in order to charge more for it.

    Much like the FAA and commercial drone use the airwaves are "controlled" by the FCC. I'd be surprised if the FCC wasn't holding this up in some way with the other half being the big players in this realm not showing interest in innovation. I also wouldn't be surprised if other countries with more open regulation are using freq ranges being held back by the FCC.

    If you look at global bandwidth speeds per country the US isn't even in the top 10. South Korea has an average of about 2.5 times higher bandwidth than we do in the US. Verizon and Comcast tout their "4G" and blazing download speeds but are using technologies generations behind other 1st world countries.
  3. SteveMann

    Aug 27, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Westford, MA
    The FCC just proposed super WiFi a few years ago. It takes the industry a while to identify a market and develop technology.
    Super Wi-Fi is not based on Wi-Fi technology and is not a replacement for conventional Wi-Fi. The FCC basically said that they were OK with digital use in the whitespace spectrum. One thing holding Super Wi-Fi back are the bandwidth limitations of the frequencies available. (That's why real Wi-Fi keeps going to higher frequencies - to get the larger bandwidth). Super Wi-Fi will provide long range voice and data, but you will never get video at a reasonable bitrate.
  4. noiseboy72

    Jul 13, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Lincs, UK
    In the UK, it's called 4G and it's already here. It lives on various frequencies, including unused UHF TV channels

    My mobile wifi dongle gives me up to 40mb up and 20mb down when in range. Not expensive either, I pay just £15 per month :)
  5. Fyod

    May 21, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Central EU
    I can imagine drone control over broadband on 4G, hell, even 3G would probably work easily. You would just need a SIM in the controller and one in the bird, with AGSM not even a card. We have data plans for a couple bucks. Then sync IP addresses. Only thing missing is some kind of encryption to rule out 3rd party control.
    The signal would be great since you're high enough and walls aren't a factor, plus with triangulation you'd always know where the bird is even in case you lost control.
    You could probably receive FPV over 4G, might have some lag though.
  6. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
    Staff Member

    Jan 7, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Lost Angeles
    Operating anything RC over a 4G network is possible but will be a very different experience as you are no longer operating point to point. You're routing through a network. LTE latency is good enough to do it (UMTS and HSPA might be passable in ideal conditions) but unless you're provided a QoS, you don't know what could happen.

    Operating point to point in ISM bands will always be much more predictable. There is talk of 5G mesh networks that could provide an interesting variation but like other public networks, you typically won't know where the blackspots are until you fly into them.

    As for the white space Wi-Fi and the lack thereof, it's a good example of how the FCC is in the pocket of big business much like the FAA. There is also the challenge of having to use different frequencies in different areas based on which legacy applications are still in use. Google has built a database to help with that.
  7. MadMitch88

    Aug 19, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Cleveland, OH
    I honestly believe "fly by cell tower" is where the drone industry is headed, both for consumers and commercial applications.

    Yes, you do sacrifice some immediate control (ie, increased latency) over 4G, but long-range flights will be 99% autonomous fly-by-GPS-waypoints anyway especially for the commercial uses. The only need for manual input will be to make small course corrections (avoid hitting an obstacle that shows up on the 4G video feed). Otherwise, you just type in your GPS waypoints for the planned flight and watch the video in real-time on your device.

    This is the future of UAV, folks --- tinkering with booster amps and big helical antennas will seem like Stone Age technology in 10 years.
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