Author Topic: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today  (Read 9306 times)

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Offline Mart

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #40 on: December 23, 2010, 08:05:18 pm »
I think 3G is where your face goes all puckery and your ears flap, looks like you have had a poor facelift.

4G is the same, but all the loose skin from your face makes a funny pattering sound as it flaps around the back of your head.

Your face peels off and you die at 9G but you look very youthful as it happens.
Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.

Offline Ringer

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #41 on: December 23, 2010, 08:24:34 pm »
Are you all saying that SBC wifi is not as advanced as 3G or 4G? Have the council bought into a camel when they needed a horse?
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Offline Simon

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #42 on: December 23, 2010, 08:45:01 pm »
Chris, Des, Geoff,

Could one of you young "Technocrats" start a thread called "IT for Old Numptys" or something and explain this "3", "3G", "4G", Smartphone, stuff to those of us that think that the big lumpy mobile in their pocket is state of the art stuff......please?

I think 3G is where your face goes all puckery and your ears flap, looks like you have had a poor facelift.

4G is the same, but all the loose skin from your face makes a funny pattering sound as it flaps around the back of your head.

Your face peels off and you die at 9G but you look very youthful as it happens.

 :santa_grin:

3 is a mobile phone company. 3G and 4G are protocols which mobile devices use to communicate with their networks, although I'm no expert in that field, so I'll let the real experts explain that one.

And if anyone can define the line between a smartphone and my really basic phone (which can surf the web although it's not a pleasant experience given the low screen resolution) then I'd be most grateful.
We are all in this together, but some of us are more in it than others (with apologies to George Orwell)

Offline moley

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #43 on: December 23, 2010, 09:14:07 pm »
2G (GSM) is still what you use on simpler mobile phones.  Good for voice, but speeds are very limited for data (so can't really have sophisticated features).  Some bells were added later e.g. GPRS (2.5G)? but basically the base stations (on the masts) can't support very many data phones connected at once.

3G (UMTS in this country) was introduced around 2000, and provides much better data coverage.  So used by smart phones (iPhones etc.)  Can give you up to 2.4 MBits/second (and again there is technology which boosts this a bit for newer devices).  So much better for downloads etc.  This is the current leading (widely adopted) phone technology in this country.  As well as phones you can get data cards e.g. for a laptop which run over UMTS (or a USB stick).

4G is what's coming next.  There are 2 variants of this: WiMax and LTE.  Looks like LTE has won the standards battle for mobile applications.  There are some initial deployments of this (Scandinavia, Verizon in the US) but don't think there are many handsets available yet (in the States Verizon are selling dongles for laptops for mobile broadband).  LTE has a maximum theoretical bandwidth of 100 MBits/second (i.e. faster than fibre broadband).  I think there have been some trials in this country, and I'd expect to see it deployed in the next couple of years.

Wifi is a kind of orthogonal technology not used so much for voice (and the wifi standards don't really cope as well with moving devices).  (In Shanghai they've demoed LTE calls on the bullet train being handed off between base stations).  It's what most people connect their laptops to.

The problem (for wifi) is that LTE probably requires much fewer (but probably more expensive) base stations to be deployed.  The costs of the technology are much cheaper than 3G, and the bandwidth is much greater.  Although people will need a dongle for laptops etc. this is probably a much more attractive proposition than wifi (because it will ultimately be deployed all over the country) and as Signal have found there are logistical issues with getting wide coverage with small wifi cells.

(I'm not a wifi expert, but my understanding is that there's less configuration possible for wifi networks than for telecomms type networks, so it's much harder to get good coverage).  (Even with telecomms networks you can still get black-spots, and operators do a lot of work configuring their networks to avoid).

Sorry if there's too much jargon here - it's very difficult to try and explain this stuff without vanishing into TLA overload...

But basically:

2G == slow     (bit like wired dial-up)
3G == faster    (like DSL)
4G == superfast.   (like fibre broadband)

Moley

Offline Ringer

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #44 on: December 23, 2010, 09:50:26 pm »
Moley

Thanks you have made that very clear, however are you saying that Wifi cannot do anything that 4G can and how will I know my phone is picking up 4G sorry about the questions, but my orange may be bigger than a blackberry but its far sweeter than an apple.
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Offline Des Morgan

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #45 on: December 23, 2010, 10:04:57 pm »
Quote
The problem (for wifi) is that LTE probably requires much fewer (but probably more expensive) base stations to be deployed.  The costs of the technology are much cheaper than 3G, and the bandwidth is much greater.  Although people will need a dongle for laptops etc. this is probably a much more attractive proposition than wifi (because it will ultimately be deployed all over the country) and as Signal have found there are logistical issues with getting wide coverage with small wifi cells.

In effect Wi Fi works using a 'mesh' system whereas WiMax and LTe use an 'umbrella' system - doesn't take mcuh to work out an 'umbrella' offers wider coverage.

Offline moley

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #46 on: December 23, 2010, 10:06:08 pm »
You will need a new handset to talk to 4G networks.  In general the handsets can fall back to the older technologies.. (e.g. a UMTS phone will talk to a GSM network if UMTS is not available).

Your phone usually says what type of network it's talking to on its display.

When you are driving round in your car, you can have a conversation with someone - your call is actually being passed around between base stations as you move (I don't think wifi can do this).  And with wifi you can make data connections, but can't connect your phone to it for voice calls (although you can probably connect some smart phones to wifi and then use Skype - I haven't played with this as my phone is prehistoric..)

The problem is that typically the phone needs new hardware to talk to the newer technologies....(e.g. the iPhone has different antennae for talking to wifi and 3G and as far as I know the iPhone death-grip caused a short between the 2 antennae).

One other interesting difference between the technologies is that typically wifi is broadcasting at fixed power, but certainly 3G and 4G modulate the power they broadcast at based on the strength of signal they are receiving... (so fewer microwaves).

Moley

Offline Ringer

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #47 on: December 23, 2010, 10:10:29 pm »
Quote
The problem (for wifi) is that LTE probably requires much fewer (but probably more expensive) base stations to be deployed.  The costs of the technology are much cheaper than 3G, and the bandwidth is much greater.  Although people will need a dongle for laptops etc. this is probably a much more attractive proposition than wifi (because it will ultimately be deployed all over the country) and as Signal have found there are logistical issues with getting wide coverage with small wifi cells.

In effect Wi Fi works using a 'mesh' system whereas WiMax and LTe use an 'umbrella' system - doesn't take mcuh to work out an 'umbrella' offers wider coverage.

Thanks Des I appreciate that as I was not clear why one and not the other. Moley I did not realise that as you drive around the wifi would not cope with the journey. Look like I should have asked for a 4G phone for Christmas.

Thanks to both of you for the answers.
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Offline moley

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #48 on: December 23, 2010, 10:16:13 pm »
don't think there are any 4G handsets yet.  The only devices on the Verizon Wireless website so far are USB dongles... I think there will be phones next year.

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #49 on: December 23, 2010, 10:41:35 pm »
Those of us who can remember other 'swindon' firsts such as Mondex (the supposed precursor of the cashless society) will probably remember 'Rabbit' for those who cannot remember 'Rabbit' a telecoms operation planned for twelve thousand base stations to be placed around the UK by December 1992. The first service was launched in Greater Manchester in May 1992 with the entire city centre of Manchester covered with Rabbit base stations. The service was then rolled out to the rest of the North of England and there was nationwide coverage in the autumn of 1993, including Swindon. At the height of Rabbit's operations they had twelve thousand base stations and ten thousand customers in the UK.

The original operators Hutchinson lost in excess of $180 million dollars on the project and closed it down less than 2 years after launching it.

Don't feel too sorry for them - they then took advantage of the new GSM product and launched Orange - the reast as they say is history.

What it does demonstrate is the volatility of the market place where the winner tends to possess or have access to the latest technology.

In some places you can still see the 'Rabbit' signs and to make your phone work you had to be within the range of the repeater.

Incidentally it took Rabbit over 3 years to get the system up and running.

Offline James

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #50 on: December 24, 2010, 01:32:49 pm »
An old colleague was involved with the 4G trials.
He said it was amazing - watching streamed telly at the bus stop, amongst other things.


Offline Outoftowner

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #51 on: December 24, 2010, 05:59:09 pm »
Thankyou technocrats all.     WiFi........R.I.P.?

Offline moley

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #52 on: December 24, 2010, 06:36:02 pm »
Thankyou technocrats all.     WiFi........R.I.P.?

Wifi will continue to have a place in the home (e.g. if you have broadband it's fine for pushing that out to home devices).

But metro-area wifi has never really taken off and I don't think it ever will... although hotspots will continue.

Mystic Moley

Offline thinktank

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Re: WiFi Works Switch On Before 14.00 Today
« Reply #53 on: December 28, 2010, 08:27:19 pm »
If you go to comet and the PC world they are giving away broad dongles with all new lap tops, net books and Pcs. That can be used anywhere and did you know they can be used in Swindon the town with the highest broadband take up in the world. Selling wifi here must be like trying to sell sand to the Bedouins.

Note for the business plan sell it to places where they do not have it.

 

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