Archived — Notice No. DGTP-006-96

Industry Canada

Radiocommunication Act

Notice No. DGTP-006-96

The Designation of Spectrum for Cordless Telephones and Proposals for the Future Use of the Bands 944-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz

Introduction

The intent of this Notice is to invite public comment on the designation of spectrum for cordless telephones and proposals for the future use of the bands 944-952 MHz and 953–956 MHz.

Spectrum for cordless telephone use is currently designated in the band 944-948.5 MHz. It was envisaged through public consultations that digital cordless telephone would be implemented in public, business and residential environments. Current cordless telephone use is much less than originally anticipated. The Department of Industry is of the view that it is appropriate to review the future disposition of this band through public consultation.

The frequency bands 948.5-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz are currently on reserve. This Notice considers their potential future use.

A document entitled "The Designation of Spectrum for Cordless Telephones and Proposals for the Future Use of the Bands 944-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz" is available for public comment. These comments will provide the basis for the development of relevant spectrum utilization policies.

Invitation to Comment

Industry Canada invites written submissions from all interested and affected parties on the above issues. Submissions should be addressed to the Director General, Telecommunications Policy Branch, Industry Canada, 300 Slater Street, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0C8 and must be received on or before October 25, 1996 to receive full consideration. All submissions must cite the Canada Gazette Part 1 Notice publication date, title, and the Notice reference number.

Written comments received in response to this Notice will be made available for viewing by the public two weeks after the closing date of this Notice, during normal business hours, at the Industry Canada Library, 365 Laurier Ave. West, Ottawa, and at the Offices of Industry Canada at Moncton, Montréal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Vancouver, for a period of one year from the close of the comment period.

This document is available electronically as follows:

World Wide Web (WWW)
http://info.ic.gc.ca/ic-data/telecom/telecom-e.html

Gopher
info.ic.gc.ca port 70/Industry Canada Documents/telecomm/gazette

Anonymous file transfer (FTP)
info.ic.gc.ca/pub/ic-data/telecom/gazette

Copies of the subject document are also available from the Communications Branch:

Industry Canada
235 Queen Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0H5
613-947-7466,

and from the offices of Industry Canada at Moncton, Montréal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Vancouver.

Dated at Ottawa this day of 19th July 1996.

Michael Helm
Director General
Telecommunications Policy Branch


The Designation of Spectrum for Cordless Telephones and Proposals for the Future use of the Bands 944-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz

Intent

The intent of Gazette Notice DGTP-006-96 is to invite public comment on the designation of spectrum for cordless telephones and proposals for the future use of the bands 944-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz.

Background

Following a period of public review, the former Department of Communications designated the band 944-948 MHz in September, 1991 for digital cordless telephone by Gazette Notice DGTP-007-91. In addition, the band 948-952 MHz was placed on reserve for potential growth and expansion of digital cordless telephone. Subsequently, in November 1992 by Gazette Notice DGTP-007-92, the band 948-948.5 MHz was added to the designation of spectrum for digital cordless telephone to accommodate digital cordless telephone signalling channels.

It was envisaged through public consultations that digital cordless telephone would be implemented in public, business and residential environments. A common air interface was adopted to facilitate the use of a common handset capable of operating in these three environments. However, there has only been implementation of digital cordless telephone systems in the business environment on a licence-exempt basis. In December, 1992, four national licenses were issued for the provision of service to the public. Although there was significant effort in trials and experiments, none of the four licensees has implemented an ongoing public commercial service for cordless telephone.

As well, the residential market has not developed, apparently due in part to the cost of the CT2Plus Class 2 standard cordless telephone handsets.

On a related matter, in June 1995 a spectrum policy framework was issued for the provision of Personal Communications Services (PCS) at 2 GHz, which included a designation of spectrum for licence-exempt applications in the band 1910-1930 MHz. These license-exempt bands could accommodate similar technologies for cordless telephone as those developed for the 900 MHz range. In December, 1995, four licences were issued for the provision of licensed PCS.

The band 953-956 MHz is also on reserve. Some representations have been made to the Department to use this band as an extension of the band 956-960 MHz for fixed radio service links to support audio broadcasting Studio-to-Transmitter Links (STL's).

Cordless Telephone

Discussion

Current cordless telephone use of the band 944-948.5 MHz is much less than originally anticipated. Consequently the Department, is of the view that it is now appropriate to review the future disposition of this band through public consultation.

The only current deployment of cordless telephones are those operating in the business environment on a licence-exempt basis. In due course it is likely that similar licence-exempt cordless telephones will be deployed in the 2 GHz PCS band. The timing of the deployment of these 2 GHz PCS cordless telephones will be dependent on a number of factors including the timing of the displacement of microwave radio systems currently operating in the band.

There are several possible options to consider for the future use of the 944-948.5 MHz band. One option (A) is to close the band for the deployment of new cordless telephones at a specified date in the future and reallocate the spectrum for another purpose. This would be predicated on the basis that licence-exempt cordless telephones no longer need to be accommodated in this band and could be deployed, for example, in the 2 GHz PCS band. An arrangement to permit the continued use of existing cordless telephones would be appropriate.

A second option (B) is to retain the use of the band 944-948.5 MHz for cordless telephones but consider the matter of the adopted standard and possibly the spectrum designated for the signalling channels. The CT2Plus Class 2 Standard was adopted to enable the use of a common handset in the public environment as well as the business and residential environments. Since the deployment of cordless telephones in the public market has not been implemted, it raises the matter of whether mandating one unique standard is still appropriate.

One variation (B1) of this Option B would be to remove certain requirements of the CT2Plus Class 2 Standard contained in RSS 130, Issue 2, to conform with the CT2 Common Air Interface (CAI) Standard I-ETS-300.131, commonly referred to as CT2 Class 1. Another variation (B2) of this Option B would be for the Department to adopt a number of standards provided that the systems meeting these standards could coexist in the same frequency spectrum. As a means of verification of the standards, there could be a requirement that they be adopted by an industry standards development body.

Yet another variation of Option B concerns the designation of the 948-948.5 MHz portion for cordless telephone which is used by the signalling channels of the CT2Plus Class 2 Standard. The CT2Plus 2 Standard has evolved. The standard has been adapted to operate in other frequency bands (namely the 1920-1930 PCS licence-exempt band for isochronous systems) where separate signalling channels are not necessary due to the application of dynamic channel allocation techniques (such techniques are being developed to fulfill the requirements of the specific spectrum etiquette required for this band). This variation (B3) would be the removal of the designation of spectrum for cordless telephone in the band 948-948.5 MHz which is used for signalling channels after a suitable phase out period of time. This would likely impact on current designs of some cordless telephones.

Proposed Spectrum Utilization Policy

Industry Canada proposes that the existing designation of cordless telephone in the band 944-948.5 MHz be retained at least for an interim period (Option B). The designation of this band for cordless telephones would be reviewed after a period of four years.

It is further proposed that the requirements for standards for cordless telephones be modified to encompass those standards that are capable of coexisting in a common band and have been adopted by an industry standards development body (Option B, Variation B2).

Comments Requested

Comments are invited on this proposal and any other options for the future spectrum and applicable standards for cordless telephone. Comments are specifically requested on the most appropriate approach for the selection of standards for cordless telephone particularly with regard to the capability of preventing mutual interference among cordless telephones operating to different standards.

Reserved Bands

Discussion

The band 948.5-952 MHz, is currently on reserve and identified for future growth and expansion for cordless telephone. Following the discussion in the previous Section it does not appear warranted to retain the identification of this spectrum for future growth of cordless telephones. There is only one other remaining reserved frequency band, 953–956 MHz, through a wide range of spectrum. Both of these bands are allocated to the mobile and fixed services on a co-primary basis in the International Table of Frequency Allocations.

Although there is a shortage of spectrum for applications in the mobile service, it is considered that the bands 948.5-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz do not have sufficient frequency separation if used as a pair to support the frequency duplex operations normally used in mobile systems. However, the Department would like public comment on the feasibility of using frequency duplex techniques in these paired bands. Comment is also invited on the merits of opening one or both of these bands on an unpaired basis for mobile operations using, for example, time domain duplex technologies.

Another potential use of these reserved bands brought to the attention of the Department is wireless local loop applications in rural and remote areas. If time domain duplex techniques are employed, it would appear that it would be technically feasible to use spectrum from these unpaired blocks of spectrum. If it is decided to proceed with the these local wireless loops, it may be expedient to define what constitutes a rural or remote area.

One possibility, for the purposes of this policy, is to define rural and remote as the area outside of the 28 Areas of Intense and Moderate Frequency Use as given in the Industry Canada Radiocommunication Information Circular 19. Due to frequency coordination considerations it may be required to enlarge the geographical zone around these Areas of Intense and Moderate Frequency use for the purposes of this policy. Comment is invited on the need for such a mechanism of defining rural and remote; whether a smaller number of areas should be included (for example, only the six Areas of Intense Frequency use) and whether it is necessary to have a larger exclusion zone around these Areas for frequency coordination.

Furthermore, Industry Canada has received a proposal from the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB) to designate the band 953-956 MHz for STL's in the fixed service. This would be an extension of the band 956-960 MHz which is currently designated for that purpose. The reasons cited by the CAB in supporting their proposal, include the requirement for additional STL's in the 900 MHz band to handle stereophonic programs with the conversion of some AM broadcasting stations to FM. The CAB also stated that the implementation of Digital Radio Broadcasting (DRB) will require additional spectrum for STL's as there will be a requirement for simulcasting of programing with the existing AM and FM broadcasting stations and in some instances these broadcasting facilities will not be collocated with the DRB facilities.

This requirement for additional spectrum for STL's would be found in certain urban areas and possibly a compatible shared use could be identified outside of those areas.

Comments Requested

Comments are invited on the future use of these reserved bands, 948.5-952 MHz and 953-956 MHz. Possibilities include the continued reservation of these bands or alternatively one of the uses discussed in the previous section or other options.

Comments are specifically requested on the feasibility of the implementation of different techniques for mobile service operations in these bands. Comments are also requested on the likely future bandwidth requirements for STL's particularly for those associated with digital audio broadcasting. Comments are invited on whether rural and remote areas need to be defined for the application of wireless local loops.


Last update: July 31, 1996 (jp)
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