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Guide Contents
History
Overview
Comparison
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1G Standard
2G Standard
2.5G Standard
3G Standard
4G Standard
Glossary
 

 RadioShack's Guide to Wireless Telecommunications

Comparison Chart

The five charts below quickly compare the differences between the generations of wireless telecommunications. Each chart covers a different aspect of the standards:
  1. Dates & Cool New Features
  2. Technology in Use
  3. Speeds
  4. Frequencies and Carriers
  5. Primary Countries
  
  Dates Cool New Features
1G 70's to 80's Wireless phones (cellular) are introduced, primarily for voice only.
2G 90's to 2000 Increased performance achieved by allowing multiple users on a single channel. More and more cellular phones are used for data as well as voice.
2.5G 2001-2004 The Internet turns the focus towards data transmission. Enhanced multimedia and streaming video are now possible. Phones support limited web browsing.
3G 2004-2005 Enhanced multimedia and streaming video capabilities are increased. Standards are created to allow universal access and portability across different device types (Telephones, PDA's, etc.)
4G 2006+ Speeds reach up to 40 Mbps. Enhanced multimedia, streaming video, access and portability are increased still further. Devices are equipped for world-wide roaming.
  
  Technology
1G Analog CMRT AMPS
2G Digital Circuit Switched D-AMPS GSM CDMA
2.5G Digital Packet Switched GPRS EDGE
3G Digital Packet Switched UMTS W-CDMA CDMA2000
4G Digital Broadband 802.11
  
  Data Rate
1G 9.6 Kbps to 14.4 Kbps
2G D-AMPS 9.6 Kbps to 14.4 Kbps
GSM 9.6 Kbps to 14.4 Kbps
IS95A 9.6 Kbps to 14.4 Kbps
IS95B 115 Kbps
2.5G 56 Kbps to 144 Kbps
3G UMTS 2+ Mbps, up to 384 Kbps
WCDMA 384 Kbps (wide area access), 2 Mbps (local area access)
CDMA2000 614 Kbps
4G 20-40 Mbps
  
  Frequency Carrier
1G 800 MHz 30 kHz
2G D-AMPS 800 MHz or 1.9 GHz 30 kHz
GSM 800 MHz or 1.9 GHz 200 kHz
IS95A/B 800 MHz or 1.9 GHz 1.25 MHz
2.5G 800 MHz or 1.9 GHz 200 kHz
3G UMTS 2 GHz 5 MHz
WCDMA 2 GHz 5 MHz
CDMA2000 2 GHz 1.25 MHz / 3.75 MHz
4G In Development In Development

  Primary Countries
1G Worldwide
2G D-AMPS USA
GSM Europe
IS95A/B USA
2.5G Europe, Asia, USA
3G Europe, Japan, USA
4G In Development
More...

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