Joyce allocates spectrum for radio ID tags, smart metering networks

Communications and Information Technology Minister Steven Joyce today said the government will be making more radio spectrum available for new and emerging commercial technologies.

Radio frequency identification (RFID) systems such as those used in supply chain management and radio mesh networks used for smart metering will both benefit from the changes. 

Mr Joyce said RFID and smart meters are technologies that can deliver significant benefits to New Zealand industry from productivity gains.

“Allocating more spectrum for these technologies will make it cheaper to deploy systems using them, and will encourage uptake.”

The decisions follow a Ministry of Economic Development review of spectrum use in the 806-960 MHz, band and consultation with industry.

The other key outcome is provision of more spectrum for use in linking radio broadcast studios to transmitter sites. This will ease congestion the radio broadcasters are experiencing with frequency availability in the main cities.

The changes will be phased in over different timeframes to allow existing users of affected spectrum to transition to a different frequency.

An immediate change is to allow higher power short-range devices in the 921.5‑928 MHz frequency range. This meets existing demand for RFID use in particular.

A full list of the changes and the Ministry of Economic Development’s report on the project is available at www.rsm.govt.nz.