The telecommunication industry involves many acronyms and abbreviations and terms like 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G are our daily discussion! One who is familiar with these terms they are well known of what has gone and what will come in the industry? But one who doesn't know the basics need not worry, here this answer will help you out!
First, understand that what does that "G" represents?
1G, 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G are the five generations of mobile networks where "G" represents Generation and the numeric values 1,2,3,4 and 5 are the generation number. Almost every ten years we come across a new generation of mobile networks.
Now, let's have a quick overview of each network and what technologies were used to enable them.
1G- First Generation of a mobile network. It provided basic voice service to customers. The technologies used were AMPS (Advanced Mobile Phone System), NMT (Nordisk MobilTelefoni or Nordic Mobile Telephone), TACS (Total Access Communications System) and C-Netz (Funktelefonnetz-C or Radio Telephone Network C).
2G- Replacement of 1G network and provided highly secure voice and text messaging services as well as limited data services. The technologies used to enable the network were Global System for Mobile Communications’ (GSM). The other technologies that were used for launching 2nd generation mobile networks were Digital Advanced Mobile Phone System (D-AMPS) and Interim Standard 95 (IS-95).
3G- The third generation of a mobile network was based on CDMA technology. There were two key tracks for 3G that is, Universal Mobile Telecommunications Systems and the other was CDMA2000. UMTS, used for migrating GSM networks to 3G and CDMA2000 was the 3G technology for IS-95 and D-AMPS.
4G- is the fourth generation of mobile network enabled by a new technology named, LTE (Long Term Evolution) of mobile networks. It is the standard network used worldwide which is more efficient than 3G technologies and transfers data at a higher speed than the previous one. Some enhancement was introduced after the launch of LTE in the form of LTE Advanced (LTE-A) and LTE Pro.
- LTE is capable to support high speeds up to 300 Mbps in the downlink.
- Whereas, LTE-A and LTE-Pro can support maximum speeds of up to 1 Gbps and 3Gbps respectively. Due to the advancement in the speed, it's been considered as a perfect choice as a mobile broadband service too.
5G- is the fifth generation of mobile networks which used a technology called New Radio or NR. It just doesn't offer high-speed internet but also a lot more.
The network is very quick and supports a large number of devices that can help in digitization of many industries. It is capable of operating in various frequency bands including high and low both frequencies. The higher frequency bands for 5G extends limited coverage but very low latency which is less than 1 millisecond, suitable for real-time services.
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