Will Increased Use of Mobile Devices Affect Connections?
With consumer increase in use of mobile technology such as smartphones and tablets, wireless carriers such as AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint are predicting a critical need for more radio spectrum. These are the radio waves, rationed by the government, that carry phone calls and wireless data. Shortages could cause slower or spotty connections and increased cost to consumers, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal titled Carriers Warn of Crisis in Mobile Spectrum by Brian X Chen.
Others, like Martin Cooper, the inventor of the cellphone, argue that a spectrum crisis is largely exaggerated. Newer technologies such as improved antennas and techniques for offloading mobile traffic to WiFi networks could greatly increase the number of mobile devices that carriers can serve.
David P. Reed, one of the original architects of the Internet, says that the electromagnetic spectrum is not finite, and that newer technologies for transmitting and receiving signals can prevent interference between the two. Separation of frequency bands would not be needed; the spectrum could be shared without running out.
I’m reminded of the technology scare that many had when the calendar turned to the new century. The Internet did not come crashing down, causing international chaos, as some had predicted. New technologies always bring about new ideas and new procedures in a never-ending pattern.
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