Microsoft researchers have taken the next step toward turning old UHF analog TV spectrum into rural wireless broadband networks that would operate like Wi-Fi but with greater range, bypassing incumbent Internet providers like AT&T in the process. “Imagine the potential if you could connect to your home [Internet] router from up to a mile,” Ranveer Chandra, a Microsoft researcher, told MIT’s Technology Review in an article posted today.

Working with researchers at Harvard University, Microsoft developed a set of protocols for wireless Internet networks using “white space,” the unlicensed spectrum previously used for broadcast television signals, in a manner similar to today’s Wi-Fi systems. They call it “White-Fi.”

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[ZDNet UK] Microsoft details Wi-Fi use for 'white spaces'

Microsoft Research: White Space Networking with Wi-Fi like Connectivity