Plans to allow gigabit Wi-Fi to use the currently dormant 5.9 GHz band are moving forward. According to the Open Technology Institute, the 75 MHz between 5850 MHz and 5925 MHz, which was set aside for “Intelligent Transportation Systems” over a decade ago, is going unused by the auto industry, and even the notoriously contentious FCC Commission members agree that this fallow bandwidth would be perfect for gigabit Wi-Fi expansion.
“The 5850-5925 band is an ideal place to explore Wi-Fi expansion,” said FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. “It’s adjacent to an existing band of unlicensed spectrum in 5725-5825 MHz. That means we have the opportunity to introduce new wideband channels to the upper portion of this band – channels that will be able to take advantage of the new 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard and deliver throughput even faster than 1 gigabit per second.” It’s not known when the bandwidth would be made available, however.