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What Does 2G, 3G, 4G Mean?

Written by HeavenlyAndroid   
Wednesday, 13 July 2011 06:00

2G, 3G, 4G, what on earth do they stand for? Mobile phones originally operated in 0G. Usually used on boats, if you happened to be extremely rich, and could afford at least 1k for the priviledge, you could have your own 0G mobile phone in your car, although the speed would be equivilant to that of a tortoise.

1G (first-generation wireless analog technology) originated in the 1980's. With 1G (analog signal), you were extremely lucky to get a decent reception and hence a phonecall at all. If you did manage to connect you were likely to be faced with a barrage of ear bashing crackles, it was not pretty to listen to. At least you could now own a mobile phone and send sms, although you were limited to phoning, messaging within your own country. 1G was very slow, delivering data at a rate of 9.6 Kbytes/sec.



2G is a wireless, digital technology (second-generation wireless digital technology). A Finnish GSM operator (global system for mobile communications), Radiolinja, was the first to use 2G in 1991. 2G allows you to make and receive phonecalls with crystal clear audio, less interference and stronger signals. 2G is rather slow, delivering data at a rate of 9.6 Kbytes/sec. Although you can access a basic mobile internet, basically text based sites called WAP, when using a 2G mobile phone, usage is limited and sometimes just not worth the effort.


3G is short for (third-generation wireless technology). 3G provides true mobile internet access at much faster speeds than previously with 2G. With 3G you also have the ability to multi-task on your mobile like never before. You can simultaneously make a telephone call and browse the internet, email or send sms, download games or anything else you wish to do. Audio and video streaming is more often than not seamless, making TV and video calls on your mobile a reality. Location based services such as GPS are also greatly enhanced with 3G, turning your phone into a mini satellite navigation system. Data is delivered at super speeds of as much as 200 Kbytes/sec. Commercially launched in Japan on Oct 1st 2001, the UK had to wait until March 2003, when 3G was introduced by 3 mobile.


4G is short for (fourth-generation wireless technology) and is presently unavailable in the UK. 4G promises to deliver data speeds up to 10 times faster than 3G speeds. 4G should also go some way to solving the problem of rural areas who struggle to get a signal in the first place. Data speeds of as much as 1 Gbytes/sec will be possible when using a mobile phone utilizing 4G in the house (stationary).


VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol)

Can you envisage a time when you will no longer need costly mobile plans, at least where your voice calls are concerned? Free phonecalls from your mobile will be expected, wherever you are, either in the house or out and about. 4G will make this an effortless reality.

It is likely that we will be looking at 2013 at the very earliest before we get a sniff at 4G mobile here in the UK. But when it comes it likely to smell of roses.

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Last Updated ( Sunday, 04 December 2011 15:57 )

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