Licence-Exempt Project
- Sep 8, 2015

Tech4i2 and Real Wireless are undertaking a study for the European Commission, to assess the extent and range of licence-exempt equipment being sold and used in the EU between now and 2030. The study will be used to help the European Commission in its goal of making available sufficient licence-exempt spectrum, harmonised at EU level, for future wireless innovation.

Concluding in September 2015, the study will enable a clearer understanding of the use of harmonised frequency bands by different categories of radio equipment in Europe, essential information for planning current and future spectrum requirements and managing congestion. It will also examine how the condition of such equipment differs between Europe and other regions. This report follows previous work by the European Commission in constructing an inventory of equipment operating in licenced spectrum. The analysis will cover the full range of licence-exempt equipment: from Wi-Fi to garage door openers, baby monitors, and even key fobs. It will both consider whether the use of such equipment fits into existing spectrum without excessive congestion, and identify new bands where positive action could be taken to stimulate currently dormant – but potentially valuable – markets.

The results of the Tech4i2 and Real Wireless study will support the implementation of the Article 9 “Inventory” of the Radio Spectrum Policy Programme (RSPP), developing a reliable approximation approach for assessing the medium and long-term spectrum usage densities in harmonised licence-exempt bands. It will also compare devices and spectrum policies for licence-exempt spectrum in Europe and the US as input to discussions on achieving greater trans-Atlantic scale economies for radio equipment in the context of Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

To find out more see the project’s LinkedIn group at



As part of the study, Tech4i2 and Real Wireless hosted a workshop on Licence-Exempt radio equipment. The workshop took place in Brussels, and was attended by a number of industry experts from ten different countries. Topics of discussion ranged from the speed of adoption of technologies, and ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ frequency bands. Below you can find the presentation from the workshop, along with a summary of market size questionnaire which is an overview of the workshop attendees’ responses.