Home > Articles > Networking > Wireless/High Speed/Optical

The Wireless Network Evolution

  • Print
  • + Share This
First-generation wireless networks were targeted primarily at voice and data communications occurring at low data rates. Recently, we have seen the evolution of second- and third-generation wireless systems that incorporate the features provided by broadband. In addition to supporting mobility, broadband also aims to support multimedia traffic, with quality of service (QoS) assurance. We have also seen the presence of different air interface technologies, and the need for interoperability has increasingly been recognized by the research community.
This chapter is from the book

Wireless communications have become very pervasive. The number of mobile phones and wireless Internet users has increased significantly in recent years. Traditionally, first-generation wireless networks were targeted primarily at voice and data communications occurring at low data rates.

Recently, we have seen the evolution of second- and third-generation wireless systems that incorporate the features provided by broadband. In addition to supporting mobility, broadband also aims to support multimedia traffic, with quality of service (QoS) assurance. We have also seen the presence of different air interface technologies, and the need for interoperability has increasingly been recognized by the research community.

Wireless networks include local, metropolitan, wide, and global areas. In this chapter, we will cover the evolution of such networks, their basic principles of operation, and their architectures.

1.1 Evolution of Mobile Cellular Networks

1.1.1 First-Generation Mobile Systems

The first generation of analog cellular systems included the Advanced Mobile Telephone System (AMPS)1 which was made available in 1983. A total of 40MHz of spectrum was allocated from the 800MHz band by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for AMPS. It was first deployed in Chicago, with a service area of 2100 square miles2. AMPS offered 832 channels, with a data rate of 10 kbps. Although omnidirectional antennas were used in the earlier AMPS implementation, it was realized that using directional antennas would yield better cell reuse. In fact, the smallest reuse factor that would fulfill the 18db signal-to-interference ratio (SIR) using 120-degree directional antennas was found to be 7. Hence, a 7-cell reuse pattern was adopted for AMPS. Transmissions from the base stations to mobiles occur over the forward channel using frequencies between 869-894 MHz. The reverse channel is used for transmissions from mobiles to base station, using frequencies between 824-849 MHz.

In Europe, TACS (Total Access Communications System) was introduced with 1000 channels and a data rate of 8 kbps. AMPS and TACS use the frequency modulation (FM) technique for radio transmission. Traffic is multiplexed onto an FDMA (frequency division multiple access) system. In Scandinavian countries, the Nordic Mobile Telephone is used.

1.1.2 Second-Generation Mobile Systems

Compared to first-generation systems, second-generation (2G) systems use digital multiple access technology, such as TDMA (time division multiple access) and CDMA (code division multiple access). Global System for Mobile Communications, or GSM3, uses TDMA technology to support multiple users.

Examples of second-generation systems are GSM, Cordless Telephone (CT2), Personal Access Communications Systems (PACS), and Digital European Cordless Telephone (DECT4). A new design was introduced into the mobile switching center of second-generation systems. In particular, the use of base station controllers (BSCs) lightens the load placed on the MSC (mobile switching center) found in first-generation systems. This design allows the interface between the MSC and BSC to be standardized. Hence, considerable attention was devoted to interoperability and standardization in second-generation systems so that carrier could employ different manufacturers for the MSC and BSCs.

In addition to enhancements in MSC design, the mobile-assisted handoff mechanism was introduced. By sensing signals received from adjacent base stations, a mobile unit can trigger a handoff by performing explicit signalling with the network.

Second generation protocols use digital encoding and include GSM, D-AMPS (TDMA) and CDMA (IS-95). 2G networks are in current use around the world. The protocols behind 2G networks support voice and some limited data communications, such as Fax and short messaging service (SMS), and most 2G protocols offer different levels of encryption, and security. While first-generation systems support primarily voice traffic, second-generation systems support voice, paging, data, and fax services.

1.1.3 2.5G Mobile Systems

The move into the 2.5G world will begin with General Packet Radio Service (GPRS). GPRS is a radio technology for GSM networks that adds packet-switching protocols, shorter setup time for ISP connections, and the possibility to charge by the amount of data sent, rather than connection time. Packet switching is a technique whereby the information (voice or data) to be sent is broken up into packets, of at most a few Kbytes each, which are then routed by the network between different destinations based on addressing data within each packet. Use of network resources is optimized as the resources are needed only during the handling of each packet.

The next generation of data heading towards third generation and personal multimedia environments builds on GPRS and is known as Enhanced Data rate for GSM Evolution (EDGE). EDGE will also be a significant contributor in 2.5G. It will allow GSM operators to use existing GSM radio bands to offer wireless multimedia IP-based services and applications at theoretical maximum speeds of 384 kbps with a bit-rate of 48 kbps per timeslot and up to 69.2 kbps per timeslot in good radio conditions. EDGE will let operators function without a 3G license and compete with 3G networks offering similar data services. Implementing EDGE will be relatively painless and will require relatively small changes to network hardware and software as it uses the same TDMA (Time Division Multiple Access) frame structure, logic channel and 200 kHz carrier bandwidth as today's GSM networks. As EDGE progresses to coexistence with 3G WCDMA, data rates of up to ATM-like speeds of 2 Mbps could be available.

GPRS will support flexible data transmission rates as well as continuous connection to the network. GPRS is the most significant step towards 3G.

1.1.4 Third-Generation Mobile Systems

Third-generation mobile systems are faced with several challenging technical issues, such as the provision of seamless services across both wired and wireless networks and universal mobility. In Europe, there are three evolving networks under investigation: (a) UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Systems), (b) MBS (Mobile Broadband Systems), and (c) WLAN (Wireless Local Area Networks).

The use of hierarchical cell structures is proposed for IMT2000. The overlaying of cell structures allows different rates of mobility to be serviced and handled by different cells. Advanced multiple access techniques are also being investigated, and two promising proposals have evolved, one based on wideband CDMA and another that uses a hybrid TDMA/CDMA/FDMA approach.

Figure 1.1. The architecture of a cellular wireless network based on ATM.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.

Overview


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information


To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.

Surveys

Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.

Newsletters

If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information


Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.

Security


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.

Children


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.

Marketing


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information


If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.

Choice/Opt-out


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information


Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents


California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure


Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.

Links


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact


Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice


We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020