4G

lte

itu

In telecommunications, 4G is the fourth generation of cellular wireless standards. It is a successor to the 3G and 2G families of standards. Speed requirements for 4G service is 100 Mbit/s for high mobility communication (such as from trains and cars) and 1 Gbit/s for low mobility communication (such as pedestrians and stationary users). By comparison, 3G’s speed requirement is 200 kbit/s (0.2 Mbit/s). The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), an agency within the UN sets requirements for what is marketed as 4G. ITU recognized that current versions of LTE, WiMax and other evolved 3G technologies that do not fulfill the requirements could nevertheless be considered ‘4G,’ provided they represent ‘a substantial level of improvement in performance and capabilities with respect to the initial third generation systems now deployed.’

The nomenclature of the generations generally refers to a change in the fundamental nature of the service, non-backwards compatible transmission technology, higher spectral bandwidth and new frequency bands. New generations have appeared about every ten years since the first move from 1981 analog (1G) to digital (2G) transmission in 1992. This was followed, in 2001, by 3G multi-media support, spread spectrum transmission and at least 200 kbit/s, in 2011 expected to be followed by 4G, which refers to all-IP packet-switched networks, gigabit speed, and multi-carrier transmission.

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