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Ofcom backs wireless TV sets


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Ofcom has released new spectrum guidelines to help boost the availability of wireless television sets by the end of 2009.

Panasonic has already announced plans to offer a wireless set, which would use wideband data transmission systems to send high definition signals from set-top-boxes and other devices to the TV without the need for cables or wires.

However, the technology requires a portion of the radio spectrum, which usually has to be licensed by Ofcom first.

The regulator has therefore said that it will free up a small part of the spectrum - 57 GHz to 66 GHz - by the end of the week to be used by electronics manufacturers.

"We've now introduced regulations which will allow this technology to be incorporated in home entertainment equipment without the need for a licence," Ofcom said in a statement.

"Because it is possible to transfer very high data rates using this technology, it could be used to create many new innovative in-home wireless network opportunities."

In response to this, Panasonic will start offering 46 inch and 54 inch plasma TV sets enabled with the technology over the next few weeks.

These products come with a transmitter box that sends a signal to a small receiver on the reverse of the screen, which is valid at up to ten meters.

Panasonic technology specialist Steve Lucas told the Daily Telegraph: "The advantage of this high radio frequency is that you can send a lot of high definition information from the transmitter to the television without the need to compress it. There will be no breakup of the picture."

However, Lucas warned that the TV sets would carry "premium" price tags when they go on sale, with the 45 inch model costing up to £5,000.

LG is also believed to be readying a wireless TV set to hit the market by the close of 2009.

£5,000 <cr>

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