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OET Denies Comment Extension on 6 GHz Item

The FCC's Office of Engineering & Technology (OET) has denied a request to extend the comments in its decision to open up more spectrum for 5G. Wi-Fi fans, including cable ops, had asked the FCC to deny it. 

On April 23, the FCC voted unanimously to allow the entire 1200 MHz of the 6 GHz band to be shared with unlicensed Wi-Fi, the FCC's latest move in freeing up more spectrum for connecting 5G in-home devices--video streaming, video calls--and connecting IoT devices to the internet. 

Related: D.C. Weighs in on FCC's 6GHz Unlicensed Vote 

The Ultra Wide Band Alliance (UWB Alliance) had asked for a 30-day extension and the Wi-Fi Alliance had asked the FCC to deny that request.  

The alliance also said that "the continued shut-down due to the COVID-19 pandemic has made the normal operation of business exceedingly difficult for commenters and indicated that lab-based testing, which would be required to thoughtfully answer the Commission’s questions has been greatly hampered." 

The Wi-Fi Alliance won the day.  

"The window originally provided for comments and reply comments is adequate to develop complete, fully supported comments and reply comments," OET said. 

It said that even though it conceded COVID-19 had affected normal business operations, "most, if not all, of the States have started to resume business activities, which should provide the ability to conduct most, if not all, tests that parties plan to conduct."