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Ofcom move could spell end for cable clutter

It relaxes rules on wireless technology


A USB cable

The days of untidy electronics cables cluttering up the home could be coming to an end after the telecoms watchdog announced a relaxation on rules governing wireless technology in the home.

Ofcom has removed restrictions on householders operating equipment using approved Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technology.

UWB uses part of the radio spectrum to transfer of large amounts of data (up to 2 Gbps) over relatively short distances (around 30 metres).

The technology could be used to connect DVD players and portable music players to a PC without the need for wires.

Ofcom said the technology could offer a number of benefits to the consumer.

Greater flexibility

These include greater flexibility in positioning devices and the ‘aesthetic advantage’ of removing the need for a mass of cables.

Technology companies have already started to develop and sell UWB products to US and Japanese markets.

Ofcom Chief Executive, Ed Richards, said: ‘Radio spectrum is an essential raw material in the development of converged communications services.

‘Where possible, we want to remove restrictions on the use of spectrum to allow the market to develop new and innovative services – such as UWB – for the benefit of consumers.’

Which? technology expert Lisa Barber said: ‘Current wireless technology does a decent job, but UWB will enable large amounts of data to be transferred incredibly quickly.

‘This opens up the market for companies to produce equipment that enables us to wirelessly stream, say, HD films around the home.’

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