Microsoft Joins Forces with D-Link to Deliver Faster Wi-Fi in Rural Regions Worldwide
Ron Perillo / 4 years ago
Network equipment maker D-Link has teamed up with operating system giant Microsoft in order to bring about faster Wi-Fi connectivity to remote rural areas worldwide using the new 802.11af protocol. D-Link chairman John Hsuan announced the partnership on Monday and dubbed the project as “Super Wi-Fi”, a worldwide infrastructure program that is entering a pilot phase beginning with a yet unnamed US state as well as three other locations in other countries.
802.11af is a 2013 amendment to Wi-Fi as an air interface for “white space” frequencies, ranging from 54MHz to 698MHz in the US, and 490 to 790MHz in Europe, having a maximum per-channel of 35.6Mbps. Unlike the 2.4GHz band, it covers a lot more ground and is designed for links up to one kilometer in range. It does not interfere with TV transmissions as well.
This is not the first project Microsoft has been involved in when it comes to delivering internet connectivity and faster Wi-Fi to unlikely and less equipped places. Earlier in 2016, the company has announced plans to connect the entirety of India using white spaces. The project into a speed bump when dealing with the Indian government, who rejected their plea to allot unused spectrum for last-mile connectivity in extremely remote regions. Local Indian telecommunication companies saw Microsoft’s project as a threat to their business and promptly pressured the Indian government to refuse the unused spectrum to be given for free.
Microsoft has had success using white spaces radio before in other countries, building an emergency internet to help with disaster relief in the Philippines last year. College students in Ghana and Kenya have had similar success taking advantage of TV white spaces as well through pilots backed by Microsoft.