Broadband by Power Lines Moves Forward

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission this week cleared the way for power companies to roll out broadband over power line service by approving a set of rules designed to limit interference to other radio frequency devices such as amateur radios. The FCC's action on broadband over power lines, often called BPL, requires providers of the alternative to cable modem or DSL service to employ devices that can switch frequencies if they cause interference and that can be shut down remotely. Commissioners, who praised BPL as a broadband competitor that will bring prices down and spur new services, also will require a national database of BPL installations for public safety agencies, amateur radio operators, and others concerned over potential interference.

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