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Tuscaloosa, AL

Too many bands

This may be a bit offtopic, but the bands being put into use for wireless strike me as a jumbled mess. First we had 850, and then we got 1900. That was fine, since many phones supported both. Then, more phones added 900 and 1800 so they'd be usable on overseas networks. So far, so good. Then many countries launched 3G on 2100, so some phones even added that. Then, the AWS band at 1700/2100 was auctioned. Next came 700, and I really have no idea what band Dish has. Not to mention Clearwire, which I believe uses 2600. And if you consider that none of the phones doing LTE on 700 are compatible with any 700 band other than the specific one that their carrier uses, then you essentially have several different bands operating in that frequency range.

Is there any consideration at all at the FCC as to the giant mess this is creating? As bad as phone compatibility issues were between GSM, CDMA, and TDMA, you could at least have a reasonable shot of buying a device that could (in theory) work on any carrier that used the same technology, assuming that it was unlocked (GSM) or could be reprogrammed (CDMA/TDMA). As it stands now, that's pretty much gone out the window. It'd be like having to buy a different radio for each station you want to listen to.


I agree. I also wonder why you couldn't put a tuner in these phones that work at most bands, somewhat like a radio tuner where one may pick up a large range of frequencies. That seems to be the smarter way to go. Of course I have no idea how the radio stuff works, so I may be saying something stupid.