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CCOOMM
MMU NUI CNA IT CI OANTS I O N S

MOBILE TECHNOLOGY:
EVOLUTION FROM 1G TO 4G
Though 3G has still not been The theory of electromagnetic systems in the late 1970s was a quantum
radiation was propounded by Clark leap in mobile communication, especially
implemented fully, the Maxwell in 1857 and explained in terms of capacity and mobility. Semi-
attention has already turned mathematically the behaviour conductor technology and microproces-
to the next generation of of electromagnetic waves. sors made smaller, lighter, and more
Then G. Marconi invented sophisticated mobile systems a real-
mobile communications, i.e. trans-atlantic radio transmis- ity. However, these 1G cellular sys-
4G. Presently, NTT DoCoMo sion using electromagnetic tems still transmitted only analogue
waves in 1901. However, as voice information.
and Hewlett-Packard are on the bandwidth of these trans- The prominent ones among
their agenda to make it mission systems was very small, 1G systems were advanced
available by the year 2006. the transmission of information mobile phone system
was very slow. (AMPS), Nordic mobile tele-
4G is being developed to Though the electromagnetic phone (NMT), and total ac-
provide data transfer speeds waves were first discovered as a com- cess communication sys-
up to 50 times more than of munications medium at the end tem (TACS). With the in-
of the 19th century, theses were put in troduction of 1G
3G use for the masses very late. The phones, the mobile
first systems offering mobile telephone market showed an-
service (car phone) were introduced in nual growth rate of 30
L.S. ASHIHO the late 1940s in the US and in Nokia 650 1G to 50 per cent, rising to
the early 1950s in Europe. These single- mobile phone nearly 20 million subscrib-

F
irst-generation (1G) mobile phones cell systems were severely constrained ers by 1990.
had only voice facility. These were by restricted mobility, low capacity,
replaced by second-generation (2G) limited service, and poor speech
The second generation
digital phones with added fax, data, and quality. Also the equipment was heavy,
messaging services. The third-generation bulky, expensive, and susceptible to in- 2G phones using global system for mobile
(3G) technology has added multimedia fa- terference. communications (GSM) were first used in
cilities to 2G phones. And now talks are the early 1990s in Europe. GSM provides
on for the next-generation mobile tech- voice and limited data services, and uses
The first generation
nology with more advanced features, i.e. digital modulation for improved audio
4G, which is expected to be available in 1G mobile phones were based on the ana- quality.
the market by 2010. logue system. The introduction of cellular Multiple digital systems. The devel-
opment of 2G cellular systems was driven
by the need to improve transmission qual-
Different Standards Used in Different Generations of Mobile Technologies ity, system capacity, and coverage. Fur-
1G 2G 3G ther advances in semiconductor technol-
ogy and microwave devices brought digi-
1. Paging systems 1. Paging systems 1. Single standard under tal transmission to mobile communica-
2. Cordless telephone 2. Cordless telephone IMT-2000, UMTS, MC-CDMA, tions.
(CTO, CTI) (DECT, PACS) TD-SCDMA Speech transmission still dominates
3. Cordless telephone cell 3. WLL the airways, but the demand for fax,
4. Private mobile radio 4. Private mobile radio short message, and data transmission is
(TETRA) growing rapidly. Supplementary services
5. Cellular systems 5. Cellular systems such as fraud prevention and encryption
(NMT, AMPS, etc) (GSM, D-AMPS, PDC, IS-95) of user data have become standard fea-
6. Mobile satellite systems 6. Mobile satellite systems tures, comparable to those in fixed net-
(INMARSAT) (IRIDIUM, ICO, works.
GLOBALSTAR) 2G cellular systems include GSM, digi-

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tal AMPS (D-AMPS), code-division mul- network (comprising cells and end connection for reliabil-
tiple access (CDMA), and personal digital backhaul communications) ity. Although Telnet is still
communication (PDC). and the core network used as a standard proto-
Today, multiple IG and 2G standards (comprising trunks, col for remote access to
are used in worldwide mobile communi- switches, and servers). computer hosts, the main
cations. Different standards serve differ- Mobile switching centres protocols in use today are
ent applications (paging, cordless tele- (MSCs) are intelligent HTTP for Web servers,
phony, wireless local loop, private mobile servers and the whole net- SMTP for e-mail, and
radio, cellular telephony, and mobile sat- work is data-driven, using SNMP for network man-
ellite communication) with different lev- subscription and authen- agement.
els of mobility, capability, and service area. tication information held The GPRS (2.5G) core
Many standards are used only in one coun- in the home location reg- network and service char-
try or region, and are incompatible. ister (HLR) and authenti- acteristics. Although GPRS
GSM is the most successful family of cation centre (AuC). is an extension to the ra-
cellular standards. It includes GSM900, The standard services dio access network, it re-
GSM-railway (GSM-R), GSM1800, include circuit-switched quires whole new packet-
GSM1900, and GSM400. GSM supports voice, fax, and data, as based IP data links, serv-
around 250 million of the world’s 450 mil- well as voicemail and ers, and gateways in the
lion cellular subscribers, with international voicemail notification. Ad- core network. Thus GPRS
roaming in approximately 140 countries ditional services include adds several new compo-
and 400 networks. wireless application proto- nents besides changing the
The core network. This network links col (WAP), high-speed cir- existing GSM or TDMA net-
together all the cells into a single net- cuit-switched data (HSCSD), work.
work, coordinates resources to hand over mobile location services GPRS is important be-
your call from one cell to another as you (MLS), and cell broadcast. Siemens S57 2.5G cause it helps operators, ven-
move, discovers where you are so that You can change to a new op- GPRS phone dors, content providers, and
you can receive incoming calls, links to erator keeping your old phone users prepare for 3G, as many
the fixed network so that you can reach number. concepts of GPRS live on in 3G, and we
fixed-line phones, and communicates with will need these enhancements to 2G net-
roaming partners. You can use your phone works for ten years or more.
2.5G
on other network links to the Internet, so At the moment, wireless network tech-
you can reach Web servers and corporate The mobile technology using general nologies are somewhere between 2G and
systems worldwide to control and deliver packet radio service (GPRS) standard has 2.5G. The second generation of mobile
services depending on your subscription been termed as 2.5G. 2.5G systems en- communications technology was all about
profile. hance the data capacity of GSM and miti- digital PCS. The problem, however, was
The 2G architecture. The existing mo- gate some of its limitations. GPRS adds that much of the digital network was
bile network consists of the radio access packet-switched capa- bilities to ex- implemented for, or overlaid onto, propri-
isting GSM etary networking equipment. Taken to-
LG’s IMT-2000 concept phone and TDMA net- gether, 2G and 2.5G technologies are far
works. Working from seamless. These range from spread-
on the basis of e- spectrum code-division multiple access
mails, it sends text (CDMA) in North America to narrow-spec-
and graphics-rich trum time-division multiple access (TDMA)
data as packets at very and GSM in Europe and Asia. In addition
fast speed. to these incompatibilities, both systems of-
The circuit-switched fer digital voice at a relatively low speed
technology has a long and with very little bandwidth left over for
successful history but it data.
is inefficient for
short data transac-
The third generation
tions and always-on
service. The packet- The 3G technology adds multimedia fa-
switched technology cilities to 2G phones by allowing video,
has grown in importance audio, and graphics applications. Over 3G
with the rise of the Internet phones, you can watch streaming video
and Internet protocol (IP). But or have video telephony. The idea behind
as IP too has its own weak- 3G is to have a single network standard
nesses, circuit-switched ser- instead of the different types adopted in
vices are not going to disappear. the US, Europe, and Asia. These phones
Transmission control protocol will have the highest speed of up to 2
(TCP) provides a virtual end-to- Mbps, but only indoors and in stationary

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1. A single family
of compatible stan-
dards that can be
used worldwide for
all mobile applica-
tions.
2. Support for
both packet-switched
and circuit-switched
data transmission.
3. Data rates up
to 2 Mbps (depend-
ing on mobility).
4. High spectrum
efficiency.
IMT-2000 is a set
of requirements de-
fined by the Interna-
Fig. 1: 3G network tional Telecommuni-
cations Union (ITU). Fig. 2: Difference between CDMA and
mode. With high mobility, the speed will ‘IMT’ stands for International Mobile Tele- W-CDMA
drop to 144 kbps, which is only about communications, and ‘2000’ represents
three times the speed of today’s fixed both the scheduled year for initial trial dorsed by major standards bodies and
telecom modems. systems and the frequency range of 2000 manufacturers, allows mobile users to have
3G cellular services, known as Uni- MHz. the constant access to the Internet and
versal Mobile Telecommunications System The most important IMT-2000 propos- the same set of capabilities irrespective of
(UMTS) or IMT-2000, will sustain higher als are the UMTS (W-CDMA) as the suc- their location. Users gain access through
data rates and open the door to many cessor to GSM, CDMA2000 as the succes- a combination of terrestrial wireless and
Internet style applications. The main char- sor to interim-standard ‘95 (IS-95), and satellite transmissions.
acteristics of IMT-2000 3G systems are: time-division synchronous CDMA (TD- Until UMTS is fully implemented, us-
SCDMA) and UWC-136/EDGE as TDMA- ers can have multi-mode devices that
Siemens SX45 UMTS phone based enhancements to D-AMPS/ switch to GPRS or EDGE technology where
GSM—all of which are leading pre- UMTS is not yet available.
vious standards towards the ul- Today’s cellular telephone systems are
timate goal of IMT-2000. mainly circuit-switched type, with
UMTS increases trans- connections always dependent on the
mission speed to 2 circuit availability. With UMTS, the
Mbps per mobile user packet-switched connection using the
and establishes a glo- IP means that a virtual connection is
bal roaming standard. always available to any other end point
Fig. 1 shows the 3G in the network. This makes it possible
network perspective. to provide new services such as alterna-
UMTS is a so-called tive billing methods (pay-per-bit, pay-
3G, broadband standard per-session, flat rate, symmetric band-
for packet-based transmis- width, and others). The higher bandwidth
sion of text, digitised of UMTS also promises video conferencing
voice, video, and mul- and the virtual home environment.
timedia at data rates In virtual home environment, a roaming
up to and possibly user can have the same services as
higher than 2 Mbps, at home or in the office, through a com-
offering a consis- bination of transparent terrestrial and
tent set of ser- satellite connections. Fig. 2 shows the
vices to mobile difference between regular CDMA and
computer and W-CDMA.
phone users, no 3G promises increased bandwidth, up
matter where to 384 kbps when the device holder is
they are in the walking, 128 kbps in a car, and 2 Mbps in
world. Based on fixed applications. In theory, 3G would
the GSM commu- work over North American as well as Eu-
nication stan- ropean and Asian wireless air interfaces.
dard, UMTS, en- A new air interface called enhanced data

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GSM environment (EDGE) has been de- However, mobile


veloped specifically to meet the phone designs
bandwidth needs of 3G. adopting a
EDGE is a faster ver- common ar-
sion of GSM wire- chitecture
less service. are gaining
But the out- momentum.
look for 3G is The main reason
neither clear nor for this trend is
certain. Part of microcontrollers execut-
the problem is ing application software for
that network pro- processing moving pictures,
viders in Europe P2101V music, and other data.
and North Foma handset Microcontroller manufacturers like
America cur- Texas Instruments and Intel Corp.
rently maintain separate standards bod- are collaborating with handset manu-
ies. In addition to technical challenges, facturers in Taiwan and China. Such
there are financial issues that cast a handsets, when produced in large (a) Mobile terminal
shadow over 3G’s desirability. volumes, will cost lower than the
existing handsets. Thus, Texas In-
struments and Intel Corp. are ex-
FOMA
pected to become the main players
Launched in October 2001, DoCoMo’s in the global mobile industry.
Freedom of Multimedia Access (FOMA)
service provides fast, high-quality voice
The fourth generation
and image transmission through packet-
based networks. FOMA’s secure access can 4G mobile communications will have
be used for mobile banking and e-com- transmission rates up to 20 Mbps—
merce, e-mail, and i-mode compatible higher than of 3G. The technology is
Websites. Its high-speed packet transmis- expected to be available by the year (b) Base station
sion network allows the i-mode structure 2010. Presently, NTT DoCoMo and Fig. 3: Protocol suite for 4G mobile terminal and
to handle more multimedia content for 3G Hewlett-Packard are on their agenda base station
and 4G wireless Internet ser- to make it available by
vices. the year 2006. Ericsson and the University of
FOMA handsets use user- 4G is being developed California are jointly researching CDMA
identity module (UIM) SIM with the following objectives: wireless access technology, advanced
cards. These will be available 1. Speeds up to 50 times antenna systems, next-generation mobile
in three types, namely, Stan- higher than of 3G. However, Internet, quality of service, power ampli-
dard (FOMA N2001), Visual the actual available band- fier technology, and wireless access
(FOMA P2101), and DataCard width of 4G is expected to networks.
(FOMA P2401). The FOMA be about 10 Mbps. Other 4G applications include
N2001 by Nokia has an 2. Three-dimensional vir- high-performance streaming of multime-
improved colour screen and tual reality—imagine per- dia content based on agent technology
no external antenna. The sonal video avatars and re- and scaleable media coding methods.
P2101V by Panasonic takes alistic holograms, and the 4G will solve problems like limited band-
image stills, so it can func- ability to feel as if you are width in 3G when people are moving
tion as a TV phone with com- present at an event even if and uncertainty about the availability of
patible equipment. you are not. People, places, bandwidth for streaming to all users at
Panasonic’s P2401 has and products will be able to all times.
a PCMCI card for high-vol- interact as the cyber and real One of the key requirements is to
ume data transmissions. worlds merge. realise a wireless 4G IP-based access sys-
A group of cellular phone 3. Increased interaction tem. The ultimate objective is to create a
makers, carriers, and software between corroborating tech- protocol suite and radio communication
developers had announced the nologies; the smart card in schemes to achieve broadband mobile
so-called ‘open mobile archi- your phone will automati- communication in 4G wireless systems. A
tecture’ that would support cally pay for goods as you new protocol suite for 4G wireless sys-
two basic air-interface stan- pass a linked payment kiosk, tems supported by Department of Defense
dards, namely, GSM/GPRS or will tell your car to warm (DoD) contains:
and W-CDMA. But some com- up in the morning as your 1. Transport-layer protocols
panies didn’t agree with the Panasonic’s phone has noted you leav- 2. Error-control protocols
proposal. W-CDMA phone ing the house. 3. Medium-access protocol

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4. Mobility management the Moore’s law and Metcalfe’s law, no


i-mode and M-mode
5. Simulation testbed one can predict the future. The Moore’s
6. Physical testbed law predicts that the speed and capacity Dubbed 4G, the i-mode technology will
7. Protocol suite in the mobile termi- of semiconductor double every 18 months, offer data transmission rates up to 200
nal (Fig. 3(a)) whereas Metcalfe’s law predicts that the times higher than 2G at 20 Mbps. 3G data
8. Protocol suite in the base station network utility increases with the number rate is currently 2 Mbps, which is very
(Fig. 3(b)) of nodes and users. high compared to 2G’s 9.6 kbps. 4G builds
4G will provide better-than-TV quality on the 3G standard, integrating and unify-
images and video-links. The communica- ing the different interfaces (W-CDMA,
4G technology concerns CDMA2000, EDGE, etc).
tions model has new developed versions
One of the main concerns about of HTML, Java, GIF, HTTP, and many The development of 4G expands upon
4G is that due to high speed of the more. New standards will need to be de- current i-mode technology that has gained
frequency, it will experience severe inter- veloped for use in 4G. wide success in Japan. The streamlined
ference from multipath secondary signals and unified wireless Internet technology
reflecting off other objects. To counter works through iHTML to provide a high-
Java-based i-mode programs quality Web service.
this problem, a number of solutions have
been proposed, including use of a vari- Variants of Java-based i-mode programs i-mode has speeded up data transmis-
able spreading factor and orthogonal fre- include the i-appli, which downloads maps sion of up to 40,000 Internet sites for
quency code-division multiplexing. and displays charts of online information. users. Charges are based on the amount
Next comes the problem of non-com- It also enables remote users to receive au- of data transmitted rather than the time
patibility of various applications. For ex- tomatic notifications of weather, traffic, spent on it.
ample, FOMA-enabled videophones can- appointments, etc, both online and from a AT&T has launched the M-mode ser-
not be used for i-motion music and video company intranet. The main bonus for us- vice tailored to the US market. The ser-
links; and the N2002 handset erases parts ers of this software is the additional secu- vice is based on WAP technology, and
of the phone’s memory if certain Websites rity encryption, which makes it suitable offers a dual browser with i-mode. Al-
are accessed. for e-commerce and mobile banking. The though applications such as cartoons
Finally, as i-mode mobile phones cost software has been developed by NTT aren’t available, messaging, information
very high, the technology will be limited DoCoMo in conjunction with Sun services, and entertainment are all acces-
to corporate use. Nevertheless, following Microsystems. sible for American users. ❑

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