The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is evaluating the potential approval of a new wireless microphone technology that would make more efficient use of the radio spectrum in large music venues or convention centers.
Issued in late April, the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeks public comment on allowing wireless multi-channel audio systems (WMAS) on a licensed basis in currently authorized frequency bands, as well as on an unlicensed basis. The Proposed Rulemaking would amend Part 74 of the Commission’s rules applicable to licensed radio devices to support more efficient use of the spectrum and to provide interference protection standards.
The spectrum available for wireless microphone technology has decreased in recent years due to the reapportionment of some portions of the frequency bands. According to the FCC, WMAS is an emerging technology that digitally combines signals of multiple wireless microphones into a wider channel than currently permitted, enabling more wireless microphones to operate in the available spectrum.
Comments on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking can be filed through the FCC’s electronic comment filing system (ECFS) (cite ET Docket No. 21-115). Comments are due by late May.