Microsoft and CSIR TVWS broadband trial

Microsoft and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) are planning a TV white spaces (TVWS) broadband trial in Limpopo.

Kobus Roux, CSIR Meraka Institute manager of strategic initiatives, said that the aim of their TV white spaces (TVWS) broadband trial is to test the technology in a rural South African environment.

“TVWS is an exciting development for the (wireless) ISP business, and I would like to see it being opened up and adopted as quickly as possible,” said Roux.

When it comes to the finer details of the trial involving Microsoft, Roux said that the agreements regarding the trial are still being finalised. “We are finalising the scope with our stakeholders,” said Roux.

Kobus Roux
Kobus Roux

Microsoft reiterated Roux’s view, saying that they are only planning a TVWS pilot in Limpopo.

Microsoft said that TVWS has been successfully trialled in Kenya, which gives them confidence that the same can happen in South Africa.

This TVWS trial follows a similar initiative in the Western Cape involving TENET, CSIR Meraka, e-Schools Network, WAPA, Comsol Wireless Solutions, and Google.

The Western Cape TVWS trial involves setting up a network for ten schools in the Western Cape over a six month period.

The aim is to demonstrate that TVWS can be used to deliver affordable broadband and Internet services without interfering with TV reception.

It is further aimed at increasing awareness of the potential for TVWS technology in South Africa and across the continent.

Headline image courtesy of White Space Technologies

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Microsoft and CSIR TVWS broadband trial