3G vs 4G in Australia
3G and 4G are both mobile wireless access technologies. 3G is widely used across the world now while 4G is still evolving and already deployed in some counties in Europe and in America only. Telstra the Telco giant in Australia announced on 15th Feb 2011 that they are planning to launch 4G LTE Network later this year. There are other carriers like SingTel Optus, Three, Vodafone and Virgin Mobile offering 3G services in Australia.
Chief Executive Officer of Telstra Mr. David Thodey announced at the World Mobile Conference 2011 in Barcelona that Telstra plans to upgrade its existing Next G (3G Network) network with Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology.
4G deployment by carriers will indirectly impact Government’s NGN scopes since LTE can theoretically offer 400 Mbps which is sufficient enough for personal home users. This will have impact on Government’s NGN project with the idea to provide ultra broadband to Australian homes. Similarly when LTE Advanced or WiMAX 2 comes into market which is capable of offering 1.2 Gbps theoretically will really impact the idea behind the Government in initiating NBN Project.
The planned 4G deployment by Telstra will also have effects in the Smartphone and tablet Market in Australia. Most of the current 3G handsets will not support 4G network thus users have to buy 4G supported new handsets. Most of the LTE handsets will support for HSPA+ as well. So now onwards users will look forward to buy handsets or tablets that can support both LTE and 3G networks. So there will be an opening for 4G-LTE Smartphones and Tablets and manufactures will target Australian market as well. This trend will really affect Apple iPhone market and other high end phones in Australia since iPhones and other high end phones available today only support 3G networks. Users will think before buying them with 2 year contract unless operators or phone makers offer free or less charge for replacement of handsets when their 4G Phones are released.
3G (Third Generation Networks)
3G is a wireless access technology replacing 2G networks. The main advantage of 3G is, it’s faster than 2G networks. Smart mobile handsets are designed not only for voice callings but also for Internet access and mobile applications. 3G networks allows simultaneous voice and data services with speed variation from 200 kbit/s and if its only data it may deliver several Mbit/s. (Mobile Broadband)
Many 3G technologies are in use now and some of them are EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution), from CDMA family EV-DO (Evolution-Data Optimized) which uses Code Division Multiple Access or Time Division Multiple Access for multiplexing, HSPA (High Speed Packet Access) which uses 16QAM modulation technique (Quadrature Amplitude Modulation) and results in data rate of 14 Mbit/s downlink and 5.8 Mbit/s uplink speeds) and WiMAX (Wireless Interoperability for Microwave Access – 802.16).
The Main advantage of 3G networks over 2G is the faster data access simultaneously with voice.
4G (Forth Generation Networks)
Everyone’s focus now turns towards 4G because of its data rate. In high speed mobility communication (such as trains or cars) it theoretically offers 100 Mbit/s and low mobility communication or fixed accessing would results 1 Gbit/s. This is a major revolution in wireless access technology.
It’s very much equivalent to getting a LAN or Gigabit Ethernet connection to a mobile device.
4G provides all IP communication with high speed access to smart phones, tablets, laptops and any mobile smart devices. Theoretically speaking this 4G access speeds are much more than Cable or DSL technologies in the sense 4G is faster than ADSL, ADSL2 or ADSL2+.
Once 4G is launched and if you have at least 54 Mbits/s (Worst case) download on your mobile handset or tablet, you can run any internet application as you do in desktop computers. For example you can run Skype, YouTube, IP TV apps, Video on Demand, VoIP Client and many more. If you have any VoIP client installed on your hand device you can make VoIP calls from your mobile. This is going to kill the mobile voice market soon. At the same time you can subscribe to any local numbers to your mobile VoIP client and start receiving calls on your mobile via IP. For example if you are living in New York you don’t need to get a NY number instead you can subscribe a Toronto fixed line number in your mobile via VoIP client. Where ever you go within 4G coverage or Wi-Fi area you can receive calls to your Toronto Number. (Even you can subscribe to Switzerland fixed number and live in New York).