1x Evolution, Data Optimized. 1xEV-DO devotes a 1.25 MHz channel for packet data traffic and yields transmission rates of up to 2.4 Mbps.
1x Radio Transmission Technology. 1X is 21 times more efficient than analog cellular and four times more efficient than TDMA networks. 1X networks can provide rates of up to 144 Kbps for packet data and an average throughput range of 60-90 Kbps on a loaded network.
Third Generation. The phase of development that followed the first generation (1G) and second generation (2G) in wireless communications. Phase 1G produced the first true mobile phone systems (known as “cellular mobile radio telephone”) that operated on analog networks for voice traffic only. Phase 2G produced digital network technology that provides voice and data traffic services. 2.5G refers to technology that is more advanced than 2G, but does not meet the requirements of 3G. Phase 3G provides increased voice and data capacity over the 2G and 2.5G networks at a minimum of 144 Kbps.
The specifications issued by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) for Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs). This family of specifications transmits data over the air on an unlicensed frequency with wireless access points that connect to an Ethernet hub or server. This allows for wireless transmissions over relatively short distances (approximately 100 feet). The family of 802.11 specifications includes: 802.11a – Operates on the 5 GHz band and uses an OFDM modulation scheme. This specification applies to wireless ATM systems and is used in access hubs. 802.11b – Operates on the 2.4 GHz band and uses DSSS for signal modulation. Offers wireless transmissions at up to 11 Mbps. 802.11g – Also operates on the 2.4 GHz band, but allows for faster data rates than 802.11b. It is compatible with both 802.11a and 802.11b and uses similar modulation techniques for both standards. Offers wireless transmission at up to 54 Mbps.
Advanced Mobile Phone Service. The standard system for analog signal cellular telephone service used in the United States and other countries. AMPS uses frequency ranges within the 800 and 900 MHz spectrum for cellular telephone.
Google's operating system for mobile devices. With the growing number of Android handsets, third party developers port their applications to the Android operating system. Famous applications that have been converted to the Android operating system include Shazam, Backgrounds, and WeatherBug. The Android operating system has also been considered important enough by a lot of the most popular internet sites and services to create native android applications. These include MySpace™, Facebook®, and Twitter™.
A short-range (approximately 10 meters) wireless communication technology that transmits both voice and data between phones, computers and other devices. Operates on the 2.45 GHz frequency band and provides data transmission rates of up to 10 Mbps.
Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless. An application development platform that makes it possible for developers to create portable applications that will work on wireless devices. Users can then download designated applications (e.g., ringtones, games, content, enhanced email, location positioning, etc.) from their carrier networks to their BREW-enabled phones.
Code-Division Multiple Access. A digital wireless technology that works by converting speech into digital information and then transmitting it as a radio signal over a wireless network. CDMA is compatible with other cellular technologies, which allows for nationwide roaming.
A set of specifications that supports mobile voice and data communications at speeds ranging from 144 Kbps to 2 Mbps. The CDMA2000 family includes CDMA2000 1X, CDMA2000 1xEV-DO and CDMA2000 1xEV-DV standards. It is also known as IS-2000.
CompactFlash Card. A memory card that uses flash memory to store data on a smaller memory card for a wide variety of computing devices (e.g., digital cameras, desktop computers and PDAs). The CF card measures 43x36 mm (about the size of a matchbook) and is available with storage capacities ranging up to 1 GB or at higher capacities for higher prices. There are two different types of CF cards for different capacities, Type I and Type II, which has more capacity. Adapters can be used with CF cards for access through a standard diskette drive, USB port or PC card slot.
Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor. The semiconductor technology used in the transistors that are manufactured into most of today’s computer microchips and imaging products. CMOS transistors use almost no power when not needed, which allows the digital camera systems found in wireless handheld devices to run longer on batteries. In camera phones, digital cameras or video cameras, CMOS can be used as the “eye” that senses light focused on its surface, like electronic film.
Compact Media Extension. Software for wireless devices that provides support for applications requiring time-synchronized multimedia outputs of MIDI-based music, text, graphics, animation and voice.
Color Super Twisted Nematic. See STN.
Daylight Savings Time Patch
Congress changed the dates for Daylight Saving Time (DST) in the United States in 2007. Canada adopted similar DST dates. These changes could cause clocks and Microsoft Outlook calendar appointments on Windows Mobile-powered devices to display incorrect times for March 11 – April 1 and October 28 – November 4. To learn more about updating your data device, click here.
Wireless devices that are equipped to operate on either the 800 MHz or 1900 MHz frequencies and can switch back and forth between these bands.
Enhanced 911. Rules that seek to improve the effectiveness and reliability of wireless 911 service by providing 911 dispatchers with location information on wireless 911 calls. The E911 program is divided into two parts – Phase I and Phase II. Phase I requires service providers to report the telephone number of a wireless 911 caller and the location of the antenna that received the call. Phase II requires wireless service providers to provide location information within 50 to 100 meters. Phase II is to be completed by December 31, 2005.
Enhanced Data GSM Environment. An upgrade to GSM wireless service that triples data speeds over standard GPRS. EDGE is designed to deliver data at rates of up to 384 Kbps and enable the delivery of multimedia and other broadband applications to mobile phone and computer users.
A string of text characters that are meant to represent an emotional state. For example: :-) = smiley face, :-( = frowney face, ;-) = winkey face (used for sarcasm) and :-/ = wry face (used for wry humor).
Enhanced Messaging Service. Based on SMS (Short Message Service), EMS is a wireless service that allows users to send and receive messages that include small pictures, animations, sound effects and text. EMS messages can be exchanged between phones regardless of model or make as long as they support the EMS standard. Non-EMS supported mobile phones treat EMS messages like SMS text messages and only display text items.
Also known as “flash RAM,” flash memory is a type of constantly powered nonvolatile memory that can be erased and reprogrammed in units of memory called blocks. It is called flash memory because the microchip is organized so that a section of memory cells is erased in a single action or “flash.” Flash memory retains information without electrical power and therefore is used in removable memory cards so data can be retained when the device is turned off.
Gigabyte. When referring to disk storage capacities it usually means 1000 MB.
General Packet Radio Services. An upgrade to the GSM network that provides data rates of up to 115 Kbps and continuous connection to the Internet for mobile phone and computer users. It is considered a 2.5G technology and is an evolutionary step EDGE.
Global Positioning System. A global navigation system developed by the U.S. Department of Defense that uses a constellation of satellites to pinpoint the geographic location of ground receivers with an accuracy of 10 to 100 meters. GPS receivers can be used to relate location with other information, such as traffic or weather conditions.
A technology solution that combines GPS and wireless network infrastructure to provide enhanced position location services. GPSOne accelerates the location determination process and provides industry-leading accuracy for callers’ E911 or GPS-enabled commercial applications.
Global System for Mobile Communication. A digital mobile telephone system that is based on TDMA technology and is widely used in Europe and other parts of the world. GSM operates at either the 850 MHz or 1900 MHz frequency band in the United States, Canada and most of the Americas, and 900 MHz and 1800 MHz in most other parts of the world.
Graphical User Interface. Pronounced GOO-ee, it is a graphical (as opposed to textual) user interface to a computer. Elements of a GUI include such things as windows, pull-down menus, buttons, scroll bars, iconic images, wizards and the mouse. Examples of familiar GUIs are the Mac or the Windows operating systems and their applications.
A wireless access point (e.g., a coffee shop, bookstore, airport or hotel) where users can establish a WLAN or “Wi-Fi” connection with their service provider, but of limited coverage (approximately 100 feet).
Also known as Evolved High-Speed Packet Access is a wireless broadband standard defined. HSPA+ provides higher data speeds.
Infrared Radiation. A technology that uses energy in the region of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum at wavelengths longer than those of visible light, but shorter than those of radio waves. It is typically used to transmit data through the air, for short distances, in a straight line or beam. It can be used to wirelessly connect various devices such as phones, computers and printers. For an IR connection to succeed, the infrared ports of communicating devices must be nearby and aimed at each other.
Java 2 Micro Edition. A technology that allows programmers to use the Java programming language and related tools to develop programs for mobile wireless devices. It is geared toward small, user-installable software applications such as games, specific functions, corporate-based applications or other custom written applications, and can be Internet-enabled, which allows for real-time transmissions over the Internet.
Introduced by Sun Microsystems in 1995, Java is a programming language that was expressly designed for use in the distributed environment of the Internet, but simpler than C++ language. It enforces an object-oriented programming model and can be used to create complete applications for a single computer or to be distributed among servers and a network. It can also be used to build a small application module for use as part of a web page.
Local Area Network. A group of computers and associated devices that share the resources of a single processor or server within a small geographic area, such as within an office building. A LAN can serve two or three users or many thousands of users.
Liquid Crystal Display. A technology used for displays in small computer devices. LCDs block light instead of emitting it, which allows them to be thinner CRT displays and consume less power than LED or gas-display displays.
Light-Emitting Diode. A semiconductor device that emits visible light when an electric current passes through it. Mostly monochromatic, LEDs are common on small devices for service or message lights, for LCD backlights and as device key backlights.
Megabyte. One million bytes, or 1,048,576 bytes in decimal notation.
Megabits per second. One million bits per second.
One million pixels and a unit of measurement for image sensing capacity in digital cameras. Typically, more megapixels in a camera will result in better resolution when printing the image. For example, a digital camera with a 1.3 megapixel resolution will print a good quality 4x3 inch print at 300 dpi (dots per inch).
Megahertz. One million hertz or cycles per second. Wireless mobile communications within the United States operate on several MHz bands, including 800 MHz and 1900 MHz bands.
A format for removable flash memory cards. SD is an acronym of Secure Digital. The cards are commonly used in cellular phones, as well as in some newer handheld GPS devices, portable media players, digital audio players, expandable USB flash memory drives, and digital cameras.
The synchronization software for Windows Mobile-based Pocket PCs and smartphones, with enhanced security features for improved desktop synchronization.
Microsoft Outlook® Mobile
A mobile version of Microsoft’s email client and personal information manager program, called Outlook, specifically designed and formatted for the Windows Phone operating system.
Musical Instrument Digital Interface. A protocol designed for recording and playing back music on digital synthesizers. It is used as an industry-standard, efficient file format for describing music. MIDI files are very small in size, but lack specific sound control.
Multimedia Message Service. An enhanced short message service for mobile wireless devices, it allows video clips, photos, graphics, audio clips, longer text or a combination thereof to be transmitted. MMS-enabled phones are generally backward-compatible with SMS and EMS.
Music on Demand. A feature that provides a mobile library of audio clips that may be downloaded to a user’s wireless device.
MPEG Layer 3. A standard developed by the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) digital audio compression and a file format. This technology can compress a sound sequence into a very small file, which allows digital music to be transmitted and stored efficiently, while still preserving the original level of sound quality when it is played.
Moving Picture Experts Group. A family of standards for digital video and digital audio compression.
Operating System. The software that manages the basic operations of a computer system. The OS controls memory apportionment, the order and method of handling tasks and the flow of data to and from the main processor and peripherals. Examples of common operating systems are Windows, UNIX and Symbian.
A card device that operates as a wireless modem on PCs or wireless communication devices. A PC card is compatible with the Personal Computer Memory Card International Association (PCMCIA) PC Card standard.
Personal Computer Memory Card International Association. An industry group organized in 1989 to promote standards for a credit card-size memory or input/output device for personal computers.
The basic unit of programmable color on a computer display or in a computer image.
Pocket Internet Explorer®
A mobile version of Microsoft’s web browser program, called Internet Explorer, specifically designed and formatted for the Pocket PC operating system.
A ringtone for mobile phones that is produced by playing several tones simultaneously (rather than a series of single or monophonic tones), which produces a more natural and realistic sound. Polyphonic ringtones can be downloaded from websites to a mobile phone.
Quarter VGA. A resolution of 320x240 pixels, or one-quarter the area of VGA resolution (640x480 pixels), that is used on handheld devices.
Pronounced KWEHR-tee, a QWERTY keyboard is the standard typewriter and computer keyboard in countries that use a Latin-based alphabet and refers to the first six letters on the upper row of the keyboard.
Random Access Memory. The place in a computer where the operating system, application programs and data in current use are kept so that they can be quickly reached by the computer’s processor.
Read-Only Memory. A computer’s built-in memory that can only be read, not written to, and contains the programming that allows your computer to be “booted up” or regenerated each time you turn it on.
Secure Digital. A tiny memory card, approximately the size of a postage stamp, used to make storage portable among various devices (e.g., mobile phones, PDAs, digital cameras, personal computers, etc.). SD cards have a high data transfer rate and low battery consumption, which makes them ideal portable devices, and use flash memory that does not require a power source to retain stored data.
Secure Digital Input/Output. A card format that provides additional functionality to devices with SD card slot. Examples include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth adapters, GPS receivers, digital cameras and wireless networking cards.
Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory. The generic name for various kinds of DRAM that are synchronized with the clock speed that the microprocessor is optimized for. This tends to increase the number of instructions that the processor can perform in a given time.
The wireless service carrier or operator that provides communication services and content for mobile device users. Examples include Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile and AT&T.
Subscriber Identity Module. A removable “smartcard” chip built into GSM devices that can identify the user, the services to which the user subscribes and store data, such as telephone numbers and addresses.
A category of mobile phones that provides integrated wireless data and voice capabilities on one handset. Smartphones run complete operating system software and allow users to make calls, send emails, browse the Internet, access corporate databases and operate other software applications via this one device.
Short Message Service. A service for sending text messages of up to 160 characters (224 characters if using a 5-bit mode) to wireless handsets. SMS messages can be held for a number of days if a wireless device is out of range or inactive, and will be received when the device is active and within range.
Super Twisted Nematic. A type of LCD flat-panel display technology that provides better contrast than twisted nematic (TN) by rotating the direction of the liquid crystal from 180 to 270.
A feature on wireless devices that allows users to play audio or video content in real time, without the need to download the content first.
Text on Nine Keys. A text input system that effectively makes a keyboard out of the numeric keypad by eliminating multitapping for text entries. For example, instead of typing 8-4-4-3-3 for the word “the,” with T9™ text entry you would type only 8-4-3 and it would recognize (or predict) it as “t-h-e.” This greatly facilitates text entries.
Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. A communications protocol that was developed by the U.S. Department of Defense, it has become the standard protocol for the Internet. Two interrelated protocols, TCP provides transport functions and IP provides the routing mechanism. It can also be used as a communications protocol in a private network. Every computer with direct access to the Internet uses a copy of the TCP/IP program.
Time Division Multiple Access. A wireless technology used in digital cellular telephone communication that divides each cellular channel into three time slots to increase the amount of data that can be carried. It is used by Digital-American Mobile Phone Service (D-AMPS), Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) and Personal Digital Cellular (PDC).
Thin-Film Transistor. A type of LCD flat-panel technology that has a transistor for each pixel, which provides excellent image quality, but uses more power and is more expensive.
Wireless devices that are equipped to operate on three of the GSM frequency bands. In the Americas, tri band devices support the 800/850, 1800 and 1900 MHz bands, and in Europe, tri band devices support the 900, 1800 and 1900 MHz bands. Triband devices can be used in North America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa.
Text Telephone/Telecommunication Device for the Deaf. A device that lets people who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech-impaired use the telephone to communicate, by allowing them to type messages back and forth to one another. The device is required on both ends of the conversation for successful communication.
Universal Serial Bus. A plug-and-play hardware interface between a computer device and add-on devices. For example, a USB can be used to connect a wireless device to a PC and is useful for quickly transferring files or synchronizing contact and calendar information.
Video Graphics Array. A display screen resolution of 640x480 pixels and 16 colors that has become the accepted minimum standard for PCs.
Video on Demand. A feature that allows wireless users to request video clips, such as TV programming content or music videos, to be played on their wireless device.
Voice over Internet Protocol. Also known as IP telephony, it is the technology that allows voice conversations to be routed over the Internet or any other IP network.
Virtual Private Network. A private network that is configured within a public network and uses encryption and other security mechanisms to ensure that only authorized users access the network.
Wide Area Network. A geographically dispersed communications network that is usually public, but may be privately owned or rented.
Wireless Application Protocol. A specification for a set of communication protocols that standardize the way mobile wireless devices access the Internet, including email and the World Wide Web.
Wideband Code-Division Multiple Access. A 3G mobile wireless technology that offers higher data speeds of up to 384 Kbps for mobile wireless devices and uses 10 MHz of wireless spectrum, a 5 MHz uplink and 5 MHz downlink, for both voice and data.
Wireless Fidelity. Another name for WLAN technology and the 802.11b/g/n wireless standard, it provides short-range wireless high-speed data transmissions between mobile data devices and Wi-Fi access points. See also 802.11.
Windows Media Player 10 Mobile™
The mobile version of Microsoft’s Windows Media Player software program for Windows Phone-based smartphones. Windows Media Player 10 plays popular digital audio and video file formats from either removable storage cards or streamed over the Internet.
Windows Phone (previously Windows Mobile until the launch of Windows Mobile 6.5) is a mobile operating system developed by Microsoft for use in smartphones and mobile devices.
Wireless Local Area Network. A local area network that transmits over the air in an unlicensed frequency, such as the 2.4 GHz band, with wireless access points that connect to an Ethernet hub or server and transmit a radio frequency over an area of several feet. See also Wi-Fi and 802.11.
Wireless Wide Area Network. A radio-based voice or data network that covers an entire metropolitan area.