2G, 3G, 4G LTE and beyond
The standards of mobile wireless technology continue to advance in terms of speed and reliable connectivity. Smartphones, mobiles and other handheld mobile gadgets are all connected to wireless mobile “Generations” (G), or formats of mobile connectivity. These are 2g, 3G, 4G (LTE). And currently in development is 5G (Fifth Generation), which would be the highest level for mobile connectivity and communication.
Each G or generation has its own speed, capability and far reaching connectivity, all according to each level. At each “generation”, there are certain things that can be expected for each of these formats.
Mobile connection commencing in 2, 3, 4…
2G (second generation) was the earliest known level of mobile connection for mobile phones, and introduced the use of text or SMS messaging for phones and simple communications functions. This is for most older, earlier mobile phones that have the most basic features for calling and SMS based services only. 3G (third generation) was the next level that was developed and released. And with it, common smartphone functions such as mobile internet, multimedia, apps, uploading and other higher bandwidth activity were introduced to ever advancing phone units and gadgets. 3G reached anywhere from 2Mbps to 7Mbps in optimal conditions.
4G (Fourth Generation) wireless broadband is the next level of high speed wireless internet and reaches maximum speeds up to 1GB max. It surpassed the 2 previous formats or versions: 2G which was developed for digital voice and SMS; and 3G which was designed for smartphones, high-speed web browsing and the use of apps.
4G is much faster and more reliable, and depends largely on the existing network (it mostly covers urban areas and select locations). It supports higher level smartphone operations seamlessly, avoiding lags and delays and providing more reliable wireless access. More importantly, this connection also enables Wi-Fi access (Wi-Fi hotspot) to other devices and smartphones, acting as a Wi-Fi hub while using the same wireless broadband connection.
Limitations with 4G and LTE?
However, 4G speeds vary largely on what is actually received in most smartphones. Theoretically, the maximum range is about 100Mbps and above, however in some instances, it can go anywhere from that to 12Mbps, or anything significantly higher than 3G. Connections that cannot be reached or achieved in the 4G level will automatically revert back to 3G default levels. This issue is a combination of coverage areas, traffic, quality of service and proper equipment, among others.
4G LTE or LTE (Long Term Evolution) is a connection that actually meets the highest global standards, exceeding normal 4G connections. This is referred to those that actually deliver the highest expected speeds and connectivity. The problem is that not all internet service providers deliver exactly what an LTE connection does, and not every company can meet this demand. People who purchase smartphones that are supposedly for 4G LTE don’t exactly get this level of service in real life in some cases. If it’s not feasible, 3G and regular Wi-Fi services that actually serve their intended speeds with more consistency can be purchased instead. It is best to check both smartphone/mobile/handheld gadget and the actual capacity and capability of the promised wireless broadband service and make sure they are matched before making a decision.