A common way of describing cellular technology is by generation, such as 1G, 2G, and so on, in which 1G is the first generation of analog cellular technology. The primary difference between 2G/2.5G and 3G is the speed at which data is transferred over the network.
1G refers to analog cellular technology that was designed for basic voice calls. The only kind of data transfer is the exchange of analog signals between phones. Because of its extremely limited capabilities for data transmission, security, and location tracking, in most regions of the world it has already been phased out.
2G is designed for voice calls and simple SMS (Short Message System) text messages between phones. Although it is the real starting point for comparing cellular technologies used for data communication, data transfer speeds are typically low at around 9.6 Kbps.
2.5G and 3G are designed for ''always on'' Internet (TCP/IP) access and rich multimedia exchange between both phones and web providers. 2.5G provides data transfer speeds up to 100 Kbps, whereas 3G achieves broadband speeds between 100 and 300 Kbps.
Cellular Standards CDMA, GSM and GPRS are the cellular communication standards that have been adopted by different carriers around the world. Although there are many proprietary and regional differences, two competing sets of standards dominate the worldwide market: GSM/GPRS and CDMA.
The most widely used 2G cellular technology worldwide is based on the GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) standard. GSM works by storing subscriber and carrier information on interchangeable SIM (Subscriber Identification Module) cards, which allow subscribers to change phones or providers by simply swapping out the cell phone's SIM card. For this and other reasons, GSM is extremely popular and well-supported worldwide, making it particularly well-suited for international roaming.
GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) is the 2.5G extension for GSM networks. GPRS was further developed for even better performance, with Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE), also known as Enhanced GPRS (EGPRS) protocol.
3G service is implemented using a standard called UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System), which is also known as 3GSM. Although this technology is not directly compatible with GSM, the standard is implemented so that devices support both standards, switching seamlessly between them as needed. As with GSM, the United States implements UMTS on different frequencies from the rest of the world, making transparent global roaming difficult. One potentially confusing aspect of UMTS is that it is based on an underlying standard called W-CDMA, which is not related to the CDMA set of standards.
Benefits of Industrial Cellular Wireless Technology
In the consumer and commercial industry, cellular technologies have enjoyed unprecedented success. The key component of the success is that the cellular technologies offer a convenient communication method and connectivity by carrier. The use of cellular technology for industrial applications is on the rise, and offers a number of key benefits to businesses.
Mobility and Increased Efficiency
Adding mobility to your operation and improving your ability to access devices remotely can lead to increased efficiency.
Wide Transmission Range
Cellular technology allows you to connect devices from a wider range of locations, and you can send and receive information at any time without limitation.
Since cellular providers use heavily restricted and well-defined bands for their networks, cellular signals are considered very secure and not vulnerable to eavesdropping.
In a factory setting, for example, a cellular solution can reduce costs and decrease the time required for maintaining and installing cabling.