Broadcasters, TV White Spaces Supporters Disagree About Database "Problems"
Any database-driven approach to spectrum sharing will hinge on the accuracy of the databases, it goes without saying. Citing errors in the databases, the U.S. National Association of Broadcasters has asked for an immediate halt to TV white spaces operations in the United States.
The Wireless Innovation Alliance, which supports TV white spaces deployment, counters that NAB provided no evidence of interference, no evidence that any FCC requirement is not being met, and no instance of any harm to a broadcaster from the data-entry rules and processes it criticizes.
NAB alleges there is evidence of “false entries.”
“The current database design allows--and may encourage--users of TV white space devices (also known as TV Band Devices or TVBDs) to falsify information they are required to enter into the database when they register certain fixed and mobile devices,” NAB argues. “This information includes, among other things, the location information upon which the Commission premised the entire concept for spectrum sharing in the TV band.”
NAB says it has conducted multiple analyses of the TVWS database in 2014, and, that at various points, more than a third of the devices in the database contained “patently inaccurate” location information.
The Wireless Innovation Alliance counters that test entries are a necessary part of the verification process.
The "discrepancies" between location and address are not indications of a messy database, the Wireless Innovation Alliance says.
The database contains two entries for each device: Its actual location and a contact record for the operator of the device.
The “location” is where the device is; the “address” could be where the responsible company can be contacted.
The skirmishing is not terribly unusual. Struggles over allocation of spectrum often pit broadcasters against communications interests or satellite interests against mobile interests.