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TV White Spaces are unused blocks of spectrum located between the frequencies assigned to television stations. It can be used to created wireless broadband connections over great distances. Around the world, Microsoft has used TVWS to deploy wireless broadband in many developing countries.
Recently, they deployed this technology in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands which were hit by devastating hurricanes. Across these regions, there are still widespread power outages and nearly half of cell sites are still down. Microsoft is working with NetHope, government agencies, local Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and local TV broadcasters to provide wireless connection that will allow thousands of people in that area to communicate with others. In Utuado, this technology has been used to reestablish internet connectivity to a food distribution site, a health clinic and the University of Puerto Rico.
They also have TVWS sites up and running in Humacao, Puerto Rico; and in the U.S. Virgin Islands in St. Croix, St. Johnand St. Thomas. And, TVWS will soon be working in Barranquitas and San Lorenzo in Puerto Rico. Our hope is that TVWS broadband connections will hasten the recovery in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, making it a little less difficult for people in the region to communicate and to recover.
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