Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Difference between 4g, 3g, 2g and 1g mobile networks

Difference between 4g, 3g, 2g and 1g mobile networks

Yesterday I was having goof time with my friend in a coffee shop. Suddenly he started discussion on mobile networks. He asked me many questions like,
1.     What is 3g mobile network? What are features?
2.    Difference between 2g and 3g networks?
3.    What are 4g mobile networks?

4.    Difference between 3g and 4g?
I tried at my level best to explain him 3g and 4g difference. New features came with 3g mobile. What will be the new features in 4g mobile? Then I thought lets write a post on the same thing. I am not going to explain the technical differences rather i will focus on features being supported in 3g, 4g mobiles.
Today in many countries, 3g network enabled mobiles are on high demand. Before understanding 3g network, let’s first understand meaning of 1g, 2g and 2.5g networks. Even before that first let’s understand, what ‘G’ stands in various G networks?
Here G stands for “Generation”. The power in mobile generation increases with respect preceding number. Higher the number before G means higher the power and efficiency of the mobile networks. In other words, as the number before G increasing, the mobile networks are becoming more “Genius”.
1G and 2G mobile networks –
1G was the first generation in network generation. In this radio signals were transmitted from mobile in “Analogue form”. This analogue radio transmission from mobile handset enabled contact from one point to other point however; the quality of radio waves was extremely bad. In 1G network generation, only SMS and call facilities from mobile phones were available.
The biggest disadvantage of 1G network was the limited network availability. The network was limited only within the country. To overcome on this problem of limited network availability, 2G was invented.
2G networks are based on narrow band digital network. Means signals were transmitted from mobile device in the Digital Format. The digital transmission of signals in 2G reduced the complexity of data transmission and quality of voice calls improved drastically. Also 2G networks had Semi Global Roaming System, which enabled the connectivity all over the world and network was not limited to only single country. However, 2G was also limited to calling and messaging purpose.
2.5G –
Between 2G and 3G, a new, infamous, network generation had come called as 2.5G. The only advancements in 2.5G over 2G was related to radio waves transmission. In 2.5G the quantity of radio waves to be transmitted was much lower. This changed mobile phones structure and mobile phones became Zero Figure. Users could carry their mobiles in pocket. 2.5G brought very important technology, GPRS (General Pocket Radio Service).
This enabled communication over the whole world however, features like email, webpage browsing, high definition videos were still not available.
3G –
3G is nothing but latest mobile generation. It has been invented to overcome the shortcomings of 2G and 2.5G. It differs from 2G and 2.5G in sense that, it uses wide bank network. Wide band network is much better than 2G narrow and network. Wide band network improved the voice call quality. 3G generation has been acclaimed for accessing internet over devices like mobile and iPad. The speed range in 3G varies over range from 384KBPS to 2MBPS. Hence 3G is much more advanced technology as compared to Wireless technology. All operations like Data transmission, voice and video calling, file transmission, internet surfing, downloading are super fast in 3G. Also technology like video conferencing, video calling, online TV can be accessed from mobile. Users can also view high definition videos, play games on 3G enabled mobiles. GPRS used to take lot of time to view mails. That time is saved by 3G technology.
3G is best option for users who need to be always connected to internet, or users who always need to travel regularly. However, having 3G enabled mobile just to show off can be expensive.
3G expenses –
Although 3G gives you extremely nice features, they are not provided free of cost. If you want to use 3G network then you need to purchase 3G compatible mobile phone which is much more expensive than normal 2G enabled mobile phone.
What is after 3G –?
Although it seems that, 3G has solved all network problems and giving you the best features, people are already looking forward towards 4G. All mobile companies are preparing for launch of 4G. 4th Generation mobile networks will have many value added features over 3G. 4G is going to have all the features that 3G provides. Apart from 3G features, multimedia, news paper etc will be the part of 4G networks. Obviously the data transmission is going to be super fast in 4G as compared to 3G. The speed range in 4G will vary from 100MBPs to 1GBPS. 5G has also been proposed.
In simple terms, future is in mobile generations and whole world is going to be in your hand with this revolution.
Happy Programming!!


  1. very nice explanation in between mobile generation technology and usages thanking u.,
    sai gopal