Cellular Network Summary
- AMPS-based analog network with the largest user base among any of the
wireless networks. Predominant use is for voice, with limited data use by mobile workers
for e-mail, file transfer and sales automation.
- Cellular handset
- A wireless cell site (a base station)
- MTSO (Mobile Telephone Switching Office)
- Extensive, rivaled only by satellite; not available in very remote
areas with low population.
|Capacity and Speed
- Industry is increasing capacity to meet increasing demand for voice.
- Data speed is limited to 4800-14400 bps; effective sustainable speed
is still low (9600).
- Works in an asynchronous mode similar to a PSTN dial-up connection;
therefore most protocols are supported (IPX/SPX, TCP/IP, SNA).
- Voice communication
- E-mail, file transfer, and sales automation
- Not suitable for applications based on interactive on-line
- Charges are for per-minute connection time intervals (20 to 30 cents
per minute in USA); some networks (Bell Mobility) charge in 10 second intervals
- A 600-character e-mail message may cost 40 cents to 60 cents,
including set up time
- PCMCIA cellular modems cost $2000-300
- 90% of USA and Canada (urban and rural areas); less extensive in
Europe, but expanding
- Planners should assume that analog cellular will be phased out and
replaced by services based on D-AMPs (digital) and PCS/GSM.
- Low very easy to eavesdrop and listen to conversations, or to
steal data. End-to-end encryption recommended.
- Currently offer more coverage than other networks
- No special software drivers required; applications can be used as is
- Supports session-oriented applications
- Compatible with remote network access (RNA) products good LAN
- Cheapest network for file transfer
- Easy to use no special equipment other than a modem and a
- Cost is high for short messages
- Unreliable transmission as compared to packet radio networks
- Long setup (connection) time for On Line Transaction type access
- Data is normally given lower priority than voice
- Being replaced by CDPD for short message applications