In Docket 04-186, the "TV Whitespace" rulemaking, there has been a lot of discussion about wireless microphones. These are devices supposedly used only by TV broadcasters and other broadcast industry eligibles defined in 74.832. Of course, most users are other audio-visual operators whose use is illegal. Indeed, today I spoke at IEEE Globecom and used a Shure wireless microphone operating at 525 MHz. This is a misdemeanor violation of 47 USC 301. I feel guilty so I am confessing to my blog readers. (Perhaps this confession will make FCC come after me!)
January 24, 2008 the 700 MHz auction starts. But a review today of the current text of 47 CFR 74.802 shows , guess what, wireless microphones are still there and have no stated eviction date!
Here's the current text:
§ 74.802 Frequency assignment.
(a) Frequencies within the following bands may be assigned for use by low power auxiliary stations:
161.625–161.775 MHz (except in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands)
488.000–494.000 MHz (except Hawaii)
§ 74.803 Frequency selection to avoid interference.
(a) Where two or more low power auxiliary licensees need to operate in the same area, the licensees shall endeavor to select frequencies or schedule operation in such manner as to avoid mutual interference. If a mutually satisfactory arrangement cannot be reached, the Commission shall be notified and it will specify the frequency or frequencies to be employed by each licensee.
(b) The selection of frequencies in the bands allocated for TV broadcasting for use in any area shall be guided by the need to avoid interference to TV broadcast reception. In these bands, low power auxiliary station usage is secondary to TV broadcasting and land mobile stations operating in the UHF-TV spectrum and must not cause harmful interference. If such interference occurs, low power auxiliary station operation must immediately cease and may not be resumed until the interference problem has been resolved.
See any requirement not to interfere with 700 MHz CMRS licensees? So before you bid a few billion dollars, you might want to ask FCC to clarify what is going on here.