Mobile

Last year in this space during our discussion on AT&T’s Microcell™ we mentioned the benefits of  cellular signal boosters. Unsurprisingly, a signal booster needs both an outside antenna to capture signal and an antenna used inside a building to rebroadcast … Continue reading

Faithful readers of this space will recall we’ve discussed cellular coverage in its many diverse applications from macrocell to femtocell and most recently digital antenna systems (DAS). Today we look at so-called “small cell” technology, a concept similar to DAS … Continue reading

As a preamble to today’s topic of fixed wireless phones, may our gentle readers indulge us as we start by mentioning the concept of “Universal Service“—the policy of offering an affordable and basic level of utility (e.g., landline telephone) service … Continue reading

An integral part of mobile wireless telephony devices worldwide, the subscriber identification module (SIM) “card” is in truth an integrated circuit made from PVC and embedded with semiconductors and electrical contacts aka “pins.” They’re found inside all GSM devices and … Continue reading

Last year in our article on microcells and picocells, we briefly visited today’s topic, Distributed Antenna Systems (DASs). A viable alternative to microcell and picocell technology, it deserves its own discussion here in our corner of cyberspace. In fact, it’s … Continue reading

Back in the day when we talked on cell phones (not smartphones) and used voice (not data), the term “roaming” had a limited impact. It generally referred to accessing a different network carrier for voice calls when outside the geographical … Continue reading

As readers have no doubt noticed, we have a penchant to use a lot of confusing acronyms. This time we add to the jumble by including numbers. To complicate matters, 3GPP and 3GPP2 have nothing to do with each other … Continue reading

We’re the first to admit that we’re not shy about loading up on tech acronyms. Today, the reader receives a particularly hefty dose of the alphabet as we discuss the mobile standards GSM, CDMA and LTE. If nothing else, remember … Continue reading

Long Term Evolution, or LTE, is the cellular technology driving today’s mobile devices. As we mentioned previously, comparing 4G to LTE is like describing a stop on a long journey with 5G the next destination on the horizon. Also, LTE … Continue reading

Full disclosure—Your intrepid blogger is partial to Android and Windows when compared to Apple and iOS but is well aware of the hardcore brand loyalty Apple users have toward their pet products. In fact, he almost lost a friendship dating … Continue reading

If you recently upgraded to iOS 9 or bought a new iPhone, then you have a new feature on it called Wi-Fi Assist. This feature essentially ensures that your phone will automatically switch to your mobile data plan if you … Continue reading

Has your cell phone ever had a dropped call? A survey conducted in 2012 by the Pew Research Center and American Life revealed that 72% of respondents had experienced a dropped call at least once and 32% of them experienced … Continue reading

How big are the expectations of millimeter wave (MMW) 5G technology? In November 2016 Verizon’s CEO Lowell McAdam, appearing at the Intel Capital Global Summit in San Diego, proclaimed MMW 5G technology to be “wireless fiber.” As outlaw Ned Pepper … Continue reading

In 1967 counterculture writer Richard Brautigan published a poem called “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace” which in its quirky way foresaw the coming tech revolution of the 21st century, namely the Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine … Continue reading

Fixed wireless services have long been a staple of communications in lesser-developed countries (LDCs), particularly those with little wireline infrastructure. Rather than plow scarce resources into increasingly obsolete wireline technologies, LDCs opted instead for wireless technologies with their cheaper construction … Continue reading

Faithful readers of this space may recall that in September mention was made of “the next stop in a long journey” — 5G. Don’t look now but in a mere few months equipment manufacturers will begin delivering the latest and … Continue reading

Wi-MAX: sounds like bigger and better Wi-Fi. Indeed it is, and people all over the world use this IP-based platform to access the Internet. (Unless you’re a Sprint customer; more on that below.) WiMAX is an acronym for Worldwide Interoperability … Continue reading

Once again, marketers have muddied the tech waters by misleading consumers with less-than-truthful descriptions of their products. Like “4G Smartphones.” Or “4K TVs.” Here, AT&T has gone beyond the pale with their ‘MicroCell’ offering, which is actually a femtocell. It’s … Continue reading

What currently drives the increase in cellular network user capacity is due in part to the ongoing evolution of micro- and picocellular networks. Mobile device users have a voracious appetite for cellular bandwidth, driving app usage and faster connection speeds. … Continue reading

What on earth is LTE?

by Morgan Staggers on September 11, 2016 in LTE

The initials stand for Long Term Evolution but the term sounds more akin to anthropology than technology. Network engineers tend to talk around the phrase rather than define it. Many (particularly marketers) equate LTE with 4G, as if they were … Continue reading

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