UWB Standard Is Still Up for Grabs
Opinion: The push to get an ultra wideband standard should take a cue from the Wi-Fi 802.11a experience.I havent heard the bulletins out of Geneva, but if they say "sweetness and light" on UWB, Ill put my money on "wishful thinking". The word on the street is that ultra wideband wireless is more likely to become a Bluetooth standard than a generally accepted PAN (personal area network) alternative proposed by anybody else. I have to confess that this came as quite a relief to me, because the alternative looks like open warfare between Europe and America. The idea of UWB is simple enough: You generate very, very low power signals across a huge spectrum, and then count on clever decoding to get the data outat broadband speeds over wireless. The signal is actually below the average background noise, and so (in theory) will generate no interference to any other spectrum user.
In theory, this month in Switzerland, we should have seen the resolution of the UWB standards battles by agreement inside the ITU (International Telecommunication Union). In reality, the politics of the matter will make it likely that whatever agreement is announced is meaningless.