Have you come across on some of these crazy acronyms whenever you’re purchasing a smartphone? 3G, 4G, LTE, GSM, HSPA, and so on, and so forth. What the heck do all they mean?
How do you differentiate them all?
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What is 4G?
4G simply means Fourth Generation of mobile telecommunications. Because there’s also 2G and 3G when they’re the first generation of technology to be implemented before 4G. It is the latest standard set by the radio sector of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU-R) that’s used in mobile telephony after 3G and 2G. ITU-R have set a standard on what speed 4G should have. When you’re in motion, connection speeds need to have a peek of at least 100 megabits per second, and for stationary users like a mobile hotspot, at least 1 gigabit per second.
What is LTE?
LTE stands for Long-Term Evolution, and it intends to be the first candidate on the 4G standard. Much like that of the High-Speed Packet Access (HSPA) is under the 3G technology and Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) for 2G. It is commonly marketed as 4G LTE. In the beginning of its release however, it does not meet the technical criteria of a 4G wireless service set forth by the ITU-R organization. But due to marketing pressures and recent advancements, ITU later decided that LTE can be called a 4G technology.
There is also called LTE-A which means LTE-Advance. This is the latest technology together with WiMAX-Advanced that satisfied the ITU in their requirement for the 4G technology. They decided to label these as “True 4G” to differentiate them with LTE, WiMAX, and HSPA+ as only called 4G.