The FCC has divided the frequency spectrum into pools called Services or Bands. Each pool is assigned a purpose such as public safety, business, marine, aviation, amateur, commercial broadcast stations, etc. Each frequency is assigned to a pool. So, for example; a frequency assigned to the public safety pool, will not be available to the business pool, or any other pool for that matter. Frequencies are not assigned to more than one pool.
Some pools, or service bands, contain a range of different frequency types such as HF, VHF, UHF, 700Mz, 800Mz, 900Mz, etc. For example, the business pool has HF, VHF, UHF, and 900Mz frequencies within its pool. Other service bands have only one type of frequency, such as GMRS has UHF only frequencies, or MURS has VHF only frequencies.
In addition, each pool also has it's own licensing requirements. The GMRS service band is open to almost anyone but does require a license. GMRS licensing requirements are simple; fill out a form and pay online. Some pools are open to everyone with no license requirement such as MURS, CB, or FRS. Other pools are very restrictive such as public safety or military.
The business pool of frequencies is only open to businesses or philanthropic organizations such as a schools, churches, or medical facilities.
The sections below outline the main features of each service band. Only service bands available to members of the general public are listed. Service bands such as public safety, military, or commercial broadcast, or others are not listed here.