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Multiple U.S. trials underway for shared 3.5GHz wireless spectrum

Six technology companies, including Google, are working on trial projects in multiple U.S. cities to test out shared 3.5GHz spectrum wireless communications under an innovative model adopted recently by the Federal Communications Commission.

The companies are working in an coalition that is tentatively being called the CBRS (Citizens Broadband Radio Service) Alliance, which borrows the CBRS terminology from the FCC. Some of the companies in the alliance have already demonstrated what they call OpenG technology, which uses 3.5GHz shared spectrum to improve indoor wireless communications.

In April, Kansas City, Mo., approved a Google test of 3.5GHz shared wireless in more than eight locations in that area for up to 18 months.

Ruckus Wireless, one of the other six alliance members with Google, is in talks to join with Google in the KC tests, said Steve Martin, general manager of emerging technology at Ruckus, in an interview. He said there will be “multiple” trials of the technology in other U.S. cities by the end of 2016, but would not disclose the cities involved.

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