Applied Information offers to buy back old DSRC tech following FCC vote to phase it out

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Following the news that the USA’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has voted to not only cut the 5.9GHz spectrum available for transportation safety, but also phase out DSRC (dedicated short range communications) Applied Information has offered to buy back installed DSRC roadside units (RSUs) as part of any upgrade to its new C-V2X tech.

The announcement comes on the back of the launch of Applied Information’s new full cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) connected vehicle RSUs and onboard units (OBU) with an automatic upgrade to 5G NR when the technology becomes available.

The new units provide both C-V2X direct and network (4G LTE) connectivity enabling short-range and long-range communications that support a host of applications such as emergency vehicle preemption, transit bus priority, red-light running alarms and school zone speed warnings, among others.

The units are configured to be upgradable to new cellular technologies such as 5G and 6G which will be supplied as part of ongoing communications plans. The buyback of installed DSRC units is to help offset the costs of converting to C-V2X.

On November 18, 2020, the FCC adopted new rules for radio communications bandwidth that had been allocated for DSRC connected vehicle safety applications approximately 20 years ago. Under the new rules, most of the bandwidth (lower 45 megahertz) is allocated for uses such as wi-fi. The remaining bandwidth (upper 30 megahertz) is allocated for C-V2X technology. Under the new rules, DSRC is to be phased out over the 12 months after the report order is enshrined into law – expected to be sometime in early 2021.

“We were hoping, as were many others in our industry, that the FCC would preserve the full 75 megahertz for roadway safety,” said Bryan Mulligan, president of Applied Information. “But now that the FCC has made its ruling on technology and spectrum allocation, we want to do our part to accelerate deployment of connected vehicle technology and its life-saving applications by providing roadway operators with a future-proof solution that can accommodate many types of communications technologies over the coming years. Our buy-back program also enables DOTs to continue their DSRC connected vehicle programs with C-V2X seamlessly while helping to defray costs.”

The Applied Information RSU is designated as 500-095 CN. The Onboard Unit is the 500-065-02 CN.

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International magazine and the Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs in charge of public agencies around the world as well as chairmen and CEOs of multinational transportation technology corporations. Tom's early career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).