Mobile telecom acronyms and abbreviations with definitions

The real challenge with acronyms is that knowing what a certain term stands for isn’t enough. You also need a simple explanation to understand what the term actually means. For example, the acronym LTE stands for Long Term Evolution, but the next logical question is “evolution of what?”. This is where a simple explanation like “it is a fourth-generation (4G) cellular technology for your mobile phones” can really help.

The telecommunications industry is full of terminologies, acronyms and abbreviations, which can be hard to understand even for those who work in the industry. Based on my personal experience in the telco industry and large corporations over the last 15+ years, I have put together a list of terminologies that I have encountered during my career to date. Below is a comprehensive list of acronyms and abbreviations used in the telecom industry, focusing on mobile communications and large corporate jargon. There are many more that I plan to add periodically, but this list should provide you with a good start.

Acronyms used by telecom companies and large corporates

AcronymStands forBut what does it mean?
1GFirst-generation (of mobile networks)A generation of mobile cellular networks which were analogue and enabled voice communications services for consumers and businesses.
2.5GSecond and a half-generation (of mobile networks)An enhancement to the second generation (2G) of mobile cellular networks that introduced efficient mobile internet services in 2G networks through General Packet Radio Service (GPRS).
2DTwo dimensionalA type of display used by the manufacturers of standard TV and media devices that presents the content on regular horizontal and vertical planes without any additional dimension or perception of “depth”.
2GSecond generation (of mobile networks)A generation of mobile cellular networks which are digital and primarily enable voice calls and text messaging services for consumers and businesses.
3DThree dimensionalA type of display used by the manufacturers of TV and media devices that adds the perception of “depth” (the third dimension) to the standard 2D display and hence showing video graphics in three dimensions.
3GThird generation (of mobile networks)A generation of digital mobile cellular networks that enable superior mobile internet which is sufficient for multimedia streaming and download services.
3GPP3rd Generation Partnership ProjectA collaboration group of multiple telecom associations that defines specifications for the development of mobile communications and associated technologies.
4GFourth generation (of mobile networks)One of the most recent generations of mobile cellular networks and a successor of 3G that mainly uses LTE (Long Term Evolution) technology to enable very high-speed mobile broadband services while also supporting traditional voice calls and text messaging.
4G+Long Term Evolution Advanced/Advanced ProA symbol shown on a mobile phone (cell phone) when it is connected to LTE Advanced or LTE Advanced pro network.
4KFour thousand (resolution/pixels horizontally)A display technology of cinema standard, used by television and other media device manufacturers, that offers a resolution of 4096 x 2160 (8.8 megapixels) which is slightly higher than Ultra High Definition (UHD).
5GFifth Generation (of mobile networks)The fifth and the latest generation of mobile networks that follows 4G LTE networks.
5GCN5G Cloud Native (core network)The mobile core network used in 5G New Radio (NR) networks.
5GHz5 GigaHertz frequency bandA frequency band used in Wi-Fi networks that allows Wi-Fi-capable devices to connect to a Wi-Fi router.
ADSLAsymmetric Digital Subscriber LineA type of Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) technology that provides high-speed internet services to consumers and businesses via traditional copper telephone lines.
AMAmplitude ModulationA technique used for the transmission of information such as audio via radio signals where the amplitude or intensity of the signal is altered to incorporate the information into the signal.
AMPSAdvanced Mobile Phone SystemAn analogue technology used for the first generation (1G) of mobile cellular networks in the US which was later followed by some other countries also.
APACAsia PacificA term or designation used for referring to the countries within the Asia-Pacific region.
APIApplication Programming InterfaceAn interface defined by rules and instructions as to how software components from one source should interact with those from another.
APNAccess Point NameA gateway information required by a mobile phone to be able to connect it to the public internet.
AppsApplicationsThe software applications used in smartphones, tablets, computers and other IT devices.
ARFCNAbsolute Radio Frequency Channel NumberA term used in 2G mobile GSM networks to refer to the pair of frequencies used for the reception and transmission of the mobile signal.
ARPUAverage Revenue Per UserA measure of the revenue generated per subscriber per month for telecom services such as mobile voice calls, SMS, mobile internet, etc.
ATMAsynchronous Transfer ModeA switching and multiplexing technique used by telecom networks which utilises asynchronous time division multiplexing to provide on-demand bandwidth with guaranteed service levels by encoding data into small fixed-sized packets.
ATMAutomated Teller MachineA cash machine used for financial transactions such as withdrawing cash
AuCAuthentication CentreA network entity in 2G GSM mobile networks that manages the authentication of services for mobile phone users.
B2BBusiness to BusinessA type of business model and transaction where a business sells its products and services to other businesses.
B2CBusiness to ConsumerA type of business model and transaction where a business sells its products and services to consumers.
BAUBusiness As UsualThe standard day-to-day activities carried out within a business typically when a product or system is operational.
BCBusiness CaseA justification for a business investment which typically shows the revenues, costs, profits, payback period and other financial metrics to justify the investment.
BoMBill of MaterialsA list of raw materials or components required to build or repair a product or service.
BRDBusiness Requirements DocumentA document that specifies the requirements defined by the product management within a company to state what a product or solution should do to address a given market opportunity
BRSBusiness Requirements SpecificationA document that specifies the requirements defined by the product management within a company to state what a product or solution should do to address a given market opportunity
BSCBase Station ControllerA network entity within 2G mobile GSM networks responsible for managing multiple Base Transceiver Stations (BTS) to manage the radio resources and control tasks such as handovers (from one cell to another) and frequency allocation.
BSSBase Station SubsystemA system within 2G mobile GSM networks responsible for managing the radio network resources which consists of Base Transceiver Station (BTS), Base Station Controller (BSC) and Transcoders.
BSSBusiness Support SystemsA component within telecom networks responsible for handling customer-facing business aspects including billing, service fulfilment, revenue management, customer management, order management, product catalogues and charging, etc.
BTSBase Transceiver StationA network entity within 2G mobile GSM networks responsible for managing all the radio communication between a mobile phone and the mobile network.
BUBusiness UnitA part or segment of a company that represents a specific business function or business area, e.g.  a certain division of a telecom company with a focus on building network components.
C Level“Chief” Level (executives)A term generally used to refer to the job titles of top executives within a company for example CEO, CFO, CTO, CMO, COO, CIO, etc.
C NetzFunktelefonnetz C (Radio Telephone Network C)An analogue technology which was used for the first generation (1G) of mobile cellular networks in Germany.
CAPEXCapital ExpenditureThe costs that a company incurs to purchase or upgrade its assets such as network components.
CCTVClosed Circuit TelevisionA video monitoring system typically used for surveillance purposes where the video signals are transmitted only to specific monitors and not publicly distributed.
CDCompact DiscA disk used for storing and playing content such as documents, images, audio and video on computers and media players.
CDMACode Division Multiple AccessA technology used in digital communications such as 2G and 3G mobile cellular networks where a single frequency channel is used to transmit the information for multiple users who are each allocated special codes to avoid interference.
CDMA2000Code Division Multiple Access 2000A technology used for the deployment of 3G mobile cellular networks on the CDMA track which uses Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) for its air interface.
cdmaONECode Division Multiple Access OneThe commercial name for the first-ever CDMA-based mobile networks which are officially called Interim Standard 1995 (IS-95)
CDRCall Detail RecordA data record of each transaction within a telecom network such as a voice call or text message that details aspects such as the call duration, origin/destination of the call, the amount billed to the customer, etc.
CEOChief Executive OfficerThe top executive of the highest-ranking responsible for making all key company decisions who reports to the board of directors and is ultimately accountable for the success or failure of the company.
CETCentral European TimeCentral European standard time which is one (1) hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).
CFOChief Finance OfficerA senior executive within a company who reports to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and is responsible for leading the financial aspects of the business including financial planning, accounts, financial risks, company shares, taxes and other similar activities.
CIOChief Information OfficerA senior executive within a company who reports to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and is responsible for information and computer technologies.
CIOTCellular Internet of ThingsA type of IoT (Internet of Things) technology that uses mobile cellular connectivity to connect SIM-enabled IoT devices to the network.
CLICalling Line IdentityA technology that displays the phone number of the caller on the device of the called party.
CMOChief Marketing OfficerA senior executive within a company who reports to the CEO and is responsible for marketing initiatives including brand management, public relations, advertising, market research and other similar activities.
CNR (C/N)Carrier to Noise RatioA measure used in telecom networks to determine the signal strength of a carrier signal by comparing the power level of the modulated carrier signal to the power level of the background noise.
COOChief Operations OfficerA senior executive within a company who reports to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the business.
CoPClose of PlayA term that is used to refer to the end of a business day which in most cases is 5 pm or 5:30 pm depending on the company and the country.
CPECustomer Premise EquipmentA hardware device such as an IP phone or a telephone set placed at the location of a customer to enable them to access the services from their telecom service provider.
CPUCentral Processing UnitThe processor or microprocessor often referred to as the “brains” of a computer used in computers, smartphones and other IT devices to process data and execute instructions that it receives through the computer programmes.
CRMCustomer Relationship ManagementThe approach, practice and strategy that allows a business to manage the relationship and interactions with its existing and prospective customers.
CSCircuit SwitchedA switching technique used in mobile cellular networks for the delivery of traditional real-time services mainly voice calls.
CSDCircuit Switched DataAn obsolete mobile data technology in 2G GSM mobile networks that used circuit-switching to enable mobile internet. This technology was replaced by GPRS.
CSPCommunications Service ProviderA company that provides any telecommunications services such as voice, text messaging and the internet, etc. via fixed (landline or wireless), mobile, satellite, or any other network.
CSSRCall Setup Success RateA key performance indicator used in telecom networks to monitor the rate of successful attempts to establish a call.
CSVComma Separated ValuesA file format used for storing data in tabular form and it can be saved and edited as a spreadsheet.
CTOChief Technology OfficerA senior executive within most technology companies who reports to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and is responsible for leading and defining the needs, strategy and direction of the company from a technology perspective. CTO is also responsible for the management of the research and development (R&D) within the company.
CXCustomer ExperienceThe overall journey and experience of a customer when interacting with a certain brand and associated products and services.
D–AMPSDigital Advanced Mobile Phone SystemA digital technology used for the second generation (2G) of mobile cellular networks in the USA which was later followed by some other countries also.
DASDistributed Antenna SystemsA network of centrally controlled antennas connected to a common source which are distributed geographically e.g. inside a building to diversify the reception of a signal and fill any coverage gaps.
dBDecibelA logarithmic unit, most commonly used in telecoms and electronics to measure the signal strength, which is a ratio between the two values of a physical quantity such as power, voltage, and current, etc.
DECTDigital Enhanced Cordless TelecommunicationsA technology standard used for cordless telephone systems where the base unit is connected to the phone line while one or more handsets are wirelessly connected to the base unit.
DPIDeep Packet InspectionA method used by telecom service providers to examine the content or body of the data being transmitted in order to make decisions on how to treat the data e.g. data prioritisation, blocking, etc.
DSLDigital Subscriber LineA technology that comes in different flavours such as ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) to provide high-speed internet services to consumers and businesses via traditional copper telephone lines.
DSPDigital Signal ProcessingA technique widely used in a variety of fields including telecommunications to process an information-carrying signal so as to to maximise its accuracy, reproducibility, reliability and performance.
DSSDynamic Spectrum SharingA technique used by 4G and 5G networks where both networks can use the same frequency spectrum by splitting the carrier (channel) dynamically to serve 4G or 5G users.
DVDDigital Versatile DiscA digital disc used for storing a large amount of data such as media which can be played on computers and DVD compatible media players.
EBITDAEarnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisationA measure of the operational performance of a business which is calculated by deducting all the operational costs (including direct costs) from the revenues.
EDGEEnhanced Data rates for Global EvolutionA pre-3G technology also sometimes referred to as 2.75G which was an enhancement to General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) and improved the achievable data rates by at least three times as compared to GPRS.
E-GPRSEnhanced General Packet Radio ServiceAn enhancement added to the General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) to improve the data rates in 2G GSM networks.
E-GSMExtended GSM (band)An extension to the original primary frequency band (P-GSM) used in mobile GSM networks, which adds another 10 MHz to the lower side of the uplink and downlink bands. The uplink band in E-GSM ranges from 880 MHz to 915MHz and the downlink band ranges from 925MHz to 960 MHz.
EIREquipment Identity RegisterA database hosted and maintained by a mobile network operator that contains all the registered IMEI numbers for mobile devices.
eMBBEnhanced Mobile Broadband or Extreme Mobile BroadbandA use case category in 5G networks that refers to the mobile broadband internet service enabled by 5G networks.
eMBMSEvolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast ServiceA technology that can be used by 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks to distribute the same multimedia content simultaneously to multiple users e.g. a live football match.
EMEAEurope, the Middle East and AfricaA term or designation used for referring to the countries within Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
eNBEvolved Node BThe cellular base station in 4G LTE networks that allows mobile phones to connect to the network.
eNodeBEvolved Node BThe cellular base station in 4G LTE networks that allows mobile phones to connect to the network.
EoBEnd of BusinessA term used for referring to the end of a business day which in most cases is 5 pm or 5:30 pm depending on the company.
EPCEvolved Packet Core (core network)The mobile core network used in 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks.
eSIMEmbedded SIMA programmable SIM circuitry built within a cellular device so that customers can connect to a mobile network without having to insert a physical SIM into the phone.
EULAEnd-User License AgreementA license agreement that the users of software are required to agree to in order to be granted the legal rights to use the software.
EVDOEvolution-Data OptimisedA technology used by CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) mobile networks to provide high-speed mobile internet services to the customers.
FATFactory Acceptance TestThe acceptance testing conducted by the vendor of software, hardware, or systems before making the product available to their customers.
FAXFacsimileA physical device or an online platform used for sending and receiving text or graphic messages over the telephone lines in the form of scanned copies.
FCCFederal Communications CommissionAn independent agency in the United States which regulates interstate and international communications.
FCFFree Cash FlowA measure of the financial performance of a company which is calculated by deducting the capital expenditures (CAPEX) from the operating cash flow.
FDDFrequency Division DuplexA technique used in mobile networks including 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks where separate frequency bands are used for the uplink (mobile phone to base station) and the downlink (base station to mobile phone).
FDMAFrequency Division Multiple AccessA technology used in analogue communications such as 1G mobile networks where a frequency band is broken down into smaller frequency sub-bands or channels to transmit and receive the information.
FHDFull High Definition (Full HD)A display technology used by television and other media device manufacturers which provides a resolution of 1920 x 1080 (2 megapixels).
FMFrequency ModulationA technique used for the transmission of a signal carrying information such as audio where the frequency of the signal is altered to incorporate the information into the signal.
FOAFirst Office ApplicationThe first (pilot) deployment of a product, service or solution carried out in a production or live environment with a selected group of customers.
FTEFull-time EquivalentThe work carried out by one full-time employee in a given period e.g. 1 FTE = 40 hours per week.
FTPFile Transfer ProtocolA protocol that allows the transfer of files from one computer to another over the internet in a client-server setup where a client computer can upload, download, delete, rename, copy and paste files on a server.
FTTCFibre to the cabinetA type of fibre optic broadband installation where the fibre optic cable runs from a local exchange to a nearby street cabinet (usually a green box by the kerb) and then a regular telephone or copper cable runs from the cabinet to the home or premises of the customer.
FTTHFibre to the homeA type of fibre optic broadband installation also known as Fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) where the fibre optic cable runs all the way from a local exchange to the home or premises of the customer.
FTTPFibre to the premisesA type of fibre optic broadband installation also known as Fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) where the fibre optic cable runs all the way from a local exchange to the home or premises of the customer.
FYFiscal YearAn accounting period of 12 months used by a company or government which may or may not be different from the calendar year.
GBGigabyteA measure of the amount of data which most commonly refers to the internet data limit or internet data consumption. 1 gigabyte (GB) equals 1000,000,000 Bytes or 1000,000 kilobytes (KB) or 1000 megabytes (MB).
GbpsGigabits per secondA unit most commonly used when referring to the network or internet speed which is the rate at which the data is transferred from a network to a device and vice versa. 1 gigabit per second (Gbps) equals 1000,000,000 bits per second or 1000,000 kilobits per second (Kbps) or 1000 megabits per second (Mbps).
GERANGSM EDGE Radio Access NetworkThe radio access part of the EDGE networks (Enhanced Data for Global Evolution) which consists of Base Transceiver Station (BTS) and Base Station Controller (BSC) and works in harmony with the 3G UMTS terrestrial radio access network (UTRAN).
GGSNGateway GPRS Support NodeA network component within GPRS and UMTS mobile core networks responsible for providing a gateway between the mobile GPRS networks and external packet-switched networks such as the internet.
GHzGigahertzA unit widely used in telecommunications and electronics to measure the frequency of electromagnetic waves that carry information signals. 1 gigahertz (GHz) equals 1000,000,000 hertz or 1000,000 kilohertz (KHz) or 1000 megahertz (MHz).
GIFGraphics Interchange FormatAn image file format suitable for the web that employs lossless compression to produce images of small size but higher quality than JPEG.
GMSCGateway Mobile Switching CentreA network entity that is part of the GSM core network and connects the Mobile Switching Centre (MSC) to external telephone networks.
gNBNext Generation Node BThe cellular base station in 5G NR networks that allows mobile phones to connect to the network.
gNodeBNext Generation Node BThe cellular base station in 5G NR networks that allows mobile phones to connect to the network.
GPRSGeneral Packet Radio ServiceA technology, also referred to as 2.5G, that introduced efficient mobile internet services in the 2G GSM networks.
GPSGlobal Positioning SystemA global system that uses a network of satellites to help navigate by calculating the location of GPS receivers within satellite navigators (Sat Nav), smartphones and other devices with embedded GPS capability.
GRNGoods Receipt NoteA note that is typically created against an issued purchase order (PO) to record the delivery of an item from the supplier. It confirms that the supplier has delivered the item.
GSMGlobal System for Mobile CommunicationsA digital technology most widely used for the second generation (2G) of mobile cellular networks that enables secure voice calls and text messaging services.
GUIGraphics User InterfaceA user interface that utilises visual representations such as graphics and icons to allow users to be able to interact with IT, electronic and telecom devices.
HDHigh DefinitionA display technology used by television and other media device manufacturers which has a resolution of 1280 x 720 (0.9 megapixels).
HDMIHigh Definition Multimedia InterfaceA standard interface that connects two high-definition (HD) devices such as laptops, televisions, etc. through a special cable. It is used for viewing HD content from one device on the other.
HDTVHigh Definition TelevisionThe display technology used in televisions and broadcasting to display media content in high-definition with a resolution of 1280 x 720 (0.9 megapixels).
HLDHigh-Level DesignA design document created against the given business requirements to define the overall system design and architecture. It also identifies the relationships between the different functions and modules within the architecture.
HLRHome Location RegisterA component within GSM and UMTS mobile core network which contains key information about a subscriber such as account details, identity, permanent location, and the mobile services that the subscriber is entitled to.
HQHead Quarter(s)A location also known as a head office that represents the most important office of an organisation where the key decisions are made.
HRHuman ResourcesA department within a company that deals with the activities relating to the employees of the company e.g. payroll, hiring, redundancies, and benefits, etc.
HSCSDHigh-Speed Circuit-Switched DataAn obsolete mobile data technology in 2G GSM mobile networks that used circuit-switching to enable mobile internet. This technology was replaced by GPRS.
HSDPAHigh-Speed Downlink Packet AccessA technology used in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) networks which significantly improves the achievable download speed (data rates) of the 3G network.
HSPAHigh-Speed Packet AccessA technology used in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) networks that significantly improves the achievable mobile data rates (internet speed) of the 3G network. HSPA is a combination of HSDPA (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access) and HSUPA (High-Speed Uplink Packet Access).
HSPA+Evolved High-Speed Packet Access or HSPA EvolutionAn enhancement to the High-Speed Packet Access (HSPA) technology used in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) networks that provides considerably higher data rates than the original HSPA technology.
HSSHome Subscriber ServerA network component within 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) mobile core network that contains key information about a subscriber such as account details, identity, permanent location, and the mobile services that the subscriber is entitled to.
HSUPAHigh-Speed Uplink Packet AccessA technology used in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) networks which significantly improves the achievable upload speed (data rate) of the 3G network.
HTMLHypertext Markup LanguageA computer language, used for creating web pages, which describes the structure and content of the web page and then displays that in a readable format.
HTTPHypertext Transfer ProtocolA protocol used by the web to transfer files such as text, images, audio, video, etc. from a web server to a user’s web browser so that the user can view information on the web pages over the internet.
HTTPSHypertext Transfer Protocol over SSLThe secure version of HTTP protocol used by the web to transfer files such as text, images, audio, video, etc. from a web server to a user’s web browser in an encrypted way so that the user can securely access the information over the internet.
IaaSInfrastructure as a ServiceA model where computing infrastructure such as servers, hard disks, firewalls, etc. are provided to a company by a 3rd party as a hosted service to avoid CAPEX intensive infrastructure deployment within the company.
ICIntegrated CircuitAn electronic circuit, also known as a microchip or chip, which is widely used in electronic products, e.g. mobile phones. It consists of various electronic components such as transistors, capacitors, resistors, etc.
ICCIDIntegrated Circuit Card IdentifierICCID stands for Integrated Circuit Card Identifier and is a number that is assigned to the SIM hardware.
ICTInformation and Communications TechnologyAn extended term for Information Technology (IT) that refers to the convergence of Information Technology (IT) and Telecommunications.
IEEEInstitute of Electrical and Electronics EngineersA global association of technical professionals which publishes technical literature in electrical engineering, computer science and electronics and is a leading developer of international standards within the fields of telecommunications, information technology and power generation. 
IMInstant MessagingA type of chat that offers real-time communication between two or more parties through text messages over the internet on various devices such as smartphones, tablets, and computers.
IMAPInternet Message Access ProtocolA protocol used by email clients for retrieving emails from the mail server over the Internet.
IMEIInternational Mobile Equipment IdentityA unique 15 digit number assigned by the device manufacturers to every mobile device including mobile phones and mobile broadband data cards to identify the device within the network.
IMSIP Multimedia SubsystemA network entity used in 4G LTE, 5G NR and other telecom networks to enable IP-based rich communication services including voice and messaging. Look at this post for details: IMS vs VoLTE.
IMSIInternational Mobile Subscriber IdentityA unique 15 digit number assigned to each SIM card to identify a mobile user within the network. This number comprises Mobile Country Code, Mobile Network Code, and Mobile Subscriber Identification Number.
IoTInternet of ThingsA system where devices, vehicles, buildings, etc. communicate with each other through an open cloud network.
IOTInteroperability TestingTesting conducted by the vendor or customer of a system or hardware or software to test the compatibility with another system or hardware or software.
IPIntellectual PropertyA creative or unique work physically created by someone where the legal rights belong to the owner of that work.
IPInternet ProtocolA protocol which governs the format and the address of the information data sent from one computer device to another over the Internet.
IP PBXInternet Protocol Private Branch ExchangeA private telephone system used by a company that utilises VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) for phone calls to allow users to communicate internally and externally while sharing a pool of available external lines.
IPSIn Plane SwitchingA display technology for LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screens, used in high-end tablets and other LCD panels, which allows the viewing of the screen from many different angles without any distortion in the colours however the images do not switch as fast when viewing fast-moving objects.
IPTVInternet Protocol TelevisionA service that provides on-demand and live TV content to customers over a dedicated IP network fully managed by the operator.
IPv4Internet Protocol version 4The current version of the Internet Protocol (IP) which was designed to support 4.3 billion IP addresses. This IP version will not be able to handle the growing demand for the use of the Internet and associated devices and will be replaced by a later version IPv6.
IPv6Internet Protocol version 6The new version of the Internet Protocol (IP) designed to support 3.4 x 10^29 billion IP addresses which will replace the current version IPv4 to accommodate the growing demand for the use of the Internet and associated devices.
IRATInter Radio Access TechnologyThe inter-working of two radio interface technologies mostly referred to in the context of handing over the call or session from one technology to another e.g. GSM to WCDMA.
IRRInternal Rate of ReturnA profitability measure of an investment which identifies the interest rate required to make the total returns equal the total costs and hence bringing the NPV to zero.
IS-95Interim Standard 1995A second-generation (2G) cellular technology that introduced the first-ever CDMA based mobile networks.
ISDNIntegrated Services Digital NetworkA set of standards used for the digital transmission of voice, video and other data over traditional circuit-switched networks.
ISOInternational Organization for StandardizationAn independent organisation that works with its national members to define international standards for quality, safety and reliability in products and services.
ISPInternet Service ProviderA company that provides internet and other associated services to consumers and businesses.
ISVIndependent Software VendorA software vendor that specialises in developing consumer or enterprise software for horizontal or vertical markets so that the software can work on one or more of the available platforms such as Windows, Linux, MAC, etc.
ITInformation TechnologyA technology that makes use of computers and communication networks to store, process, send and receive information.
ITILInformation Technology Infrastructure LibraryA set of best practices for Information Technology (IT) management with the aim to align IT services with the business needs.
ITUInternational Telecommunications UnionAn agency of United Nations for information and communications technologies (ICT) that deals with the allocation of global radio spectrum, satellite orbits and technical standards.
IVRInteractive Voice ResponseAn automated telephone system used by businesses which provides pre-recorded instructions and choices to the callers so that they can be directed to the most appropriate departments.
JPEGJoint Photographic Experts GroupAn image file format that employs lossy compression to produce images of small file size suitable for the web.
KBKilobyteA measure of the amount of data which most commonly refers to the internet data limit or the internet data consumption. 1 kilobyte (KB) equals 1000 Bytes.
KbpsKilobits per secondA unit most commonly used when referring to the network or internet speed which is the rate at which the data is transferred from a network to a device and vice versa. 1 Kilobit per second (Kbps) equals 1000 bits per second.
KPIKey Performance IndicatorsA set of metrics used in telecom and other industries to evaluate the performance of a product or service based on the compliance standards for each of the product or service components which may or may not be directly exposed to the end-user. Network KPIs mainly focus on network performance as opposed to the quality experienced by the end-user. When used in a business context, KPIs can also be defined for financial and business metrics.
KQIKey Quality IndicatorsA set of metrics used in telecom and other industries to evaluate the performance of specific parts of the product or service from an end-user perspective. KQIs may be derived from certain KPIs but the focus is more on the service quality aspect rather than the network performance.
LANLocal Area NetworkA group of computers and devices connected to each other within a small area such as a house or an office.
LCDLiquid Crystal DisplayA display technology used in computer monitors, laptops, notebooks, digital watches, calculators and televisions, etc. which can provide a much thinner display as compared to the Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) display in the earlier versions of televisions and monitors. 
LEDLight Emitting DiodeA semiconductor device that is a light source and can be used as the backlight for LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) televisions to transform them into “LED” televisions.
LLDLow-Level DesignA design document that provides the implementation level details for each and every component within a solution architecture. LLD document is built upon the High-Level Design (HLD) document.
LoSLine of SightThe propagation of radio waves where the transmitter and receiver must be able to have a clear sight of each other for signal transmission
LTELong Term EvolutionThe leading technology used for the fourth generation (4G) of mobile cellular networks that offers 4G services on your mobile phone. LTE provides 4G upgrade paths to all key 3G networks including UMTS and CDMA2000.
LTE+Long Term Evolution Advanced/Advanced ProA symbol shown on a mobile phone (cell phone) when it is connected to LTE Advanced or LTE Advanced pro network.
LTE-ALong Term Evolution AdvancedA 4G technology that uses an advanced version of LTE technology to deliver peak download speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Average speeds are considerably lower.
LTE-A ProLong Term Evolution Advanced ProA 4G technology that uses an enhanced version of LTE Advanced technology to deliver peak download speeds of up to 3 Gbps. Average speeds are considerably lower.
M2MMachine to MachineA point-to-point solution where a device can communicate with another device or a remote computer through mobile, fixed or IT networks to meet certain business objectives. For example, an alarm system triggering an SMS to the local police station in case of emergency.
MANMetropolitan Area NetworkA group of computers and devices connected to each other within a relatively large geographical area such as a town or city.
MBMegabyteA measure of the amount of data which most commonly refers to the internet data limit or internet data consumption.  1 megabyte (MB) equals 1000,000 bytes or 1000 kilobytes (KB).
MbpsMegabits per secondA unit most commonly used when referring to the network or the internet speed which is the rate at which the data is transferred from a network to a device and vice versa. 1 Megabit per second (Mbps) equals 1000,000 bits per second or 1000 Kilobits per second (Kbps).
MHzMegahertzA unit widely used in telecommunications and electronics to measure the frequency of electromagnetic waves that carry information signals. 1 megahertz (MHz) equals 1000,000 Hertz or 1000 kilohertz (KHz).
MIMOMultiple Input Multiple OutputAn antenna technology used by modern wireless networks including 4G LTE, 5G NR and WiFi6 that employs multiple antenna elements at the transmitter and receiver to improve data rates and signal quality.
MMEMobility Management EntityThe main signalling node within the 4G LTE core network.
MMSMultimedia Messaging ServiceA service used for sending multimedia messages including photos, audio and video clips from one mobile phone to another over a mobile network.  It is an extension of Short Message Service (SMS) which is a text-only service.
mMTCMassive Machine Type CommunicationA use case category in 5G networks that refers to the ability to support mass deployment of billions of IoT devices.
mmWaveMillimetre-WaveThe high-frequency bands between 30 GHz and 300 GHz that can be used by 5G mobile networks. They are called millimetre waves because the length of each wave (wavelength) ranges between 1 and 10 millimetres.
MNOMobile Network OperatorA company that operates a mobile cellular network typically within a country to offer mobile services such as voice calls, text messaging, mobile internet and other relevant services to its customers.
MoIPMobile communications over Internet ProtocolA text or voice-based online collaboration using the Internet on the mobile phone.
MoUMemorandum of UnderstandingA formal agreement between two or more parties in order to achieve a common objective such as forming a business partnership.
MoUMinutes of UseThe consumption of mobile or wireless voice minutes by a telecom customer during a given period such a day or month or year.
MP4Moving Picture Experts Group 4 (MPEG4)A standardised and popular media (container) format that is used for storing video, audio, subtitles, images, etc. to enable the sharing of video over the Internet.
MPEGMoving Picture Experts GroupA standardised format used for video and audio in DVDs/CDs which uses MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 compression.
MPLSMulti-Protocol Label SwitchingA technique used by service providers for faster and prioritised delivery of data through assigning short-path labels on data packets rather than long IP addresses to reduce the complexity in the routing process.
MRDMarketing Requirements DocumentThe requirements defined by product marketing or product management within a company to detail a market opportunity from a customer perspective as an input for a new product, proposition or service.
MRSMarketing Requirements SpecificationThe requirements defined by product marketing or product management within a company to detail a market opportunity from a customer perspective as an input for a new product, proposition or service.
MSCMobile Switching CentreA key component of the mobile core network in the GSM, GPRS, EDGE and UMTS networks responsible for Circuit Switched (CS) voice calls and functions such as switching of calls between mobile and fixed users, administration of handovers, authentication and location updates.
MSISDNMobile Station International Subscriber Directory NumberMSISDN stands for Mobile Station International Subscriber Directory Number, and it is just your complete mobile phone number with the country code and any prefixes that are part of your mobile number.
MU-MIMOMulti-User Multiple Input Multipe OutputA type of MIMO antenna technology used in 4G LTE and 5G NR networks that allows multiple antennas to serve multiple users simultaneously.
MVNOMobile Virtual Network OperatorA mobile service provider that provides mobile voice, text messaging, data and associated services but does not have a radio access network of their own. An MVNO usually purchases the network capacity from a mobile network operator (MNO).
NDANon Disclosure AgreementA legal contract, usually signed by two parties wanting to do business together, which forms an agreement between the two parties to not disclose each other’s confidential information such as sensitive documents, presentations, and other sources of information to a third party.
NFCNear Field CommunicationsA communication technique used in smartphones, IT devices and debit or credit cards which establishes a short-range connection between a primary device and an NFC-enabled device to process actions like contactless payments, file transfer, and printing, etc.
NFVNetwork Function VirtualisationA network architecture concept where physical hardware components of the network are replaced with software running on off-the-shelf servers making those components “virtual”.
ng-eNodeBNext Generation Evolved Node BA special 4G LTE cellular base station that allows mobile phones to connect to the 4G radio network in network deployments where a 5G core network is used instead of 4G core network (EPC).
NG-RANNext Generation Radio Access NetworksThe radio access network used by the fifth generation of mobile networks (5G).
NMTNordisk MobilTelefoni (Nordic Mobile Telephone)An analogue technology used for the first generation (1G) of mobile cellular networks in the Nordic countries.
NOCNetwork Operations CentreA department or location within a telecom or IT company where activities such as network management, control and monitoring take place.
Non LOSNon Line of SightThe propagation of radio waves where the transmitter and receiver do not require a clear sight of each other for signal transmission.
NPDNew Product DevelopmentThe process used within product management to bring a new product to market by transforming a market opportunity into a sellable product. The end-to-end NPD process may vary depending on the company and/or industry, but generally, all NPD processes start with idea generation and end at the commercial launch of the product.
NPVNet Present ValueA profitability measure of an investment which takes into account the present value of future returns from an investment, less the actual investment.
NRNew RadioThe cellular technology used by 5G networks just like LTE is the cellular technology used by 4G networks.
NSANon-Stand-Alone (5G)A type of 5G network deployment where 5G radio network works with a 4G LTE core network to serve 5G phones and devices. Look at this post for details: NSA vs SA.
NSSNetwork Switching System (NSS)The circuit-switched part of the mobile core network in 2G GSM networks that includes MSC (Mobile Switching Centre).
OEMOriginal Equipment ManufacturerA term that represents the manufacturer of network products and systems who in most cases is the network vendor.
OFDMOrthogonal Frequency Division MultiplexingA technique used in telecom networks including LTE, Wi-Fi and WiMAX to carry the data signal over the air interface in a highly efficient manner. In OFDM, a large amount of data can be transmitted by splitting it across multiple closely-spaced signals at different frequencies and low data rates.
OFDMAOrthogonal Frequency Division Multiple AccessA multi-user access technology used in telecom networks including LTE, Wi-Fi and WiMAX to carry the signal from the base station to the user device. OFDMA is the multi-user flavour of OFDM (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing). It splits the data from individual users across individual sets of multiple closely-spaced signals.
OLEDOrganic Light Emitting DiodeA technology used by television manufacturers in which a display panel with self-emissive pixels makes it possible to create ultra-thin and energy-efficient television displays.
OMCOperations and Maintenance CentreA department within telecom and IT companies that deals with network operations and maintenance.
OMC-ROperations & Maintenance Centre-RadioA department within a mobile network operating company that deals with operations and maintenance of the radio network.
OpCoOperating Company (e.g. Mobile operator)The companies within an organisation that work with a central entity within the Head Office to operate the business and generate sales in the local markets.
OPEXOperational ExpendituresThe costs incurred by a company for the usual business operations that include maintenance, support, and any other recurring activities.
OpsOperations departmentThe operations department in telecom companies that carries out the day-to-day activities to maintain and support the network systems and associated services.
OSOperating SystemA programme or system software installed on a computing device that manages all other programmes, hardware and software applications on the computer.
OSIOpen System InterconnectionA reference model that specifies the international standards within a communication network to enable interconnection and interworking of all systems that adopt the same standards.
OSSOperations Support Systems (aka Operational Support Systems)A system consisting of specialised software and hardware to monitor, analyse, configure and manage all the operational activities within a mobile network
OTTOver The TopA service model in which the overall communication, as well as the delivery of on-demand and live content, takes place over the public Internet on a best-effort basis with no guaranteed service quality levels.
PaaSPlatform as a ServiceA model where computing platforms such as operating systems and databases, etc. are provided to a company by a 3rd party as a hosted service which avoids the need for CAPEX-intensive deployment within the company premises.
PACPorting Authorisation CodeAn authorisation code that a customer requires from his/her mobile operator when he/she wants to switch to another mobile operator while keeping the existing mobile phone number.
PAYGPay As You GoA prepaid mobile tariff where a customer pays for the services in advance before using them.
PBXPrivate Branch ExchangeA private telephone system used by a company which allows users to make internal and external phone calls while sharing a pool of available external lines within the company.
PCPersonal ComputerA general-purpose desktop or laptop computer that is designed for an individual user and is typically based on the microprocessor technology.
PCRFPolicy and Charging Rules FunctionA node in mobile networks that works with the mobile core network to allow an operator to implement policies in real time based on business rules.
PDAPersonal Digital AssistantA handheld mobile device also known as palmtop which provides capabilities such as note-taking, calendars and synchronisation of contact list, etc.
PDN-GWPacket Data Network GatewayAn entity that is part of 4G LTE core network, Evolved Packet Core. It connects the 4G LTE networks to external data networks.
PESQPerceptual Evaluation of Speech QualityA method used for the testing of speech quality level as perceived by an end-user which compares a recorded voice message generated by the transmitter with the one that comes out of the receiver.
P-GSMPrimary GSM bandThe original primary frequency band used in mobile GSM networks which ranges from 890 MHz to 915 MHz for the uplink band and 935 MHz to 960 MHz for the downlink band.
PINPersonal Identification NumberA numeric code usually required in phones and IT devices for security reasons to authenticate a user to the system.
PLMNPublic Land Mobile NetworkA network which is established to provide terrestrial or land mobile communications services to the general public.
PMOProject Management OfficeA department within a company that defines and maintains the standards for project management.
PNGPortable Networks GraphicsAn image file format suitable for the web that employs lossless compression to produce images of higher quality and larger size than the GIF images.
POPurchase OrderA commercial document and legal binding between a supplier and a buyer to specify what is being purchased and at what price and payment terms.
PoCProof of ConceptA testing exercise carried out in a test environment to assess the feasibility of the core concepts and business objectives of a potential product, service or solution.
PRDProduct Requirements DocumentThe product requirements defined by product management within a company that details what the product should do in order to address a certain market opportunity.
PSPacket SwitchedA switching technique used for the communication of data (mobile internet) services in mobile networks.
PSTNPublic Switched Telephone NetworkAn aggregate of all conventional telephone networks in the world which are operated by national authorities but are interconnected to provide voice dominated telephone services to the public.
PUKPersonal Unlocking KeyA security code for the SIM card which a customer requires from his/her mobile service provider to unblock his/her SIM if the SIM accidentally gets blocked for some reason e.g. if a wrong PIN code has been entered multiple times.
QAQuality AssuranceA process to check if a product or service is meeting the specified quality standards and requirements.
QAMQuadrature Amplitude ModulationA digital modulation technique that ensures high-speed data in modern wireless networks including 3G HSPA, 4G LTE and 5G NR.
QoEQuality of ExperienceA measure of the performance of a product or service from a user viewpoint which focuses on how a user subjectively feels about his/her experience of interacting with the product or service.
QoSQuality of ServiceA measure of the performance of a product or service that focuses on the network characteristics and metrics which may or may not be directly noticeable by the customer. QoS also refers to the differentiation or prioritisation of certain services or traffic types in different network conditions. For example, a service provider may decide to prioritise voice carrying data traffic over other traffic in busy hours.
R&DResearch & DevelopmentThe engineering department within a company where a certain technology is developed.
RAGRed, Amber, GreenThe status reporting used in project management where green suggests that the project is on-track, amber means there are some issues that require close monitoring, and red means there are serious issues where a recovery plan is required.
RAMRandom Access MemoryA memory chip used in computers and other electronic devices to temporarily store any programs or applications or other information being used by the computer so that the processor can quickly access them as and when needed. The higher the RAM the faster the computer.
RANRadio Access NetworkA key part of the mobile network that enables air-interface communication between a mobile phone and the mobile network. RAN connects a mobile phone to the mobile core network.
RFRadio FrequencyAny frequency used for the transmission of information wirelessly using radio waves. Examples include televisions, radio, mobile phones, walkie-talkies and baby monitors, etc.
RFIRequest For InformationA formal request made by a company to potential suppliers with the intention to get information on supplier capabilities within a certain business area so that the company can review and refine their business requirements and shortlist the potential suppliers.
RFPRequest For ProposalA formal request made by a company to potential suppliers with the intention to get a proposed solution and associated price models and process details to address specific business needs of the company.
RFQRequest For QuotationA formal request made by a company to potential suppliers to get the price for a solution that potentially meets the requirements specified by the company.
RMAReturn Merchandise AuthorisationAn authorisation that a customer requires from a product supplier to return a faulty product within its warranty period to the supplier for repair or refund.
RNCRadio Network ControllerA network entity in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunication System) networks that controls the base stations (NodeB) and is responsible for radio resource management and mobility management.
ROIReturn On InvestmentA measure of the efficiency of an investment that compares the return from the investment with the associated cost to get a ratio between the return and the cost. This ratio can also be expressed as a percentage.
ROMRead-Only MemoryA memory chip used in computers and other electronic devices to store permanent data or programming which is required for booting up the device.
SAStand-Alone (5G)A type of 5G network deployment that employs a 5G radio network and a 5G core network to implement an end-to-end 5G network.
SaaSSoftware as a ServiceA model where software applications such as email clients and other office software are provided to a company by a 3rd party as a hosted service in exchange for a monthly or yearly fee.  This way the company doesn’t need to invest its CAPEX in purchasing and deploying the software on company devices.
SARSpecific Absorption RateThe amount of radio frequency absorbed by the human body when using a mobile phone. Mobile phones with lower SAR values are considered safer as compared to those with higher SAR values.
SBAService-Based ArchitectureA type of network architecture used in advanced mobile networks including 5G NR where the network can be reconfigured virtually to facilitate various service use cases.
SC-FDMASingle Carrier Frequency Division Multiple AccessThe access technology used in Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks for the uplink to carry signals from the mobile phone to the base station. The downlink in LTE networks uses OFDMA. However, SC-FDMA is more power efficient due to its lower peak-to-average-power ratio (PAPR) and therefore using it in the uplink improves the battery life of the mobile phone.
SDKSoftware Development KitA set of software tools used by application developers and programmers to build applications for specific platforms or operating systems.
SDMService Delivery ManagerThe job title for a manager employed by a company to lead a team of engineers or consultants to ensure the delivery of services to the customers.
SDMASpace Division Multiple AccessA multiple access technique used in mobile networks enabled by the MIMO antenna technology through the use of multiple spatially separated antennas at the transmitter and the receiver.
SDNSoftware-Defined NetworkingAn approach used in network management that provides centralised control capability with the aim to increase network flexibility and agility.
SDTVStandard Definition TelevisionThe display technology used in televisions and broadcasting to display content in standard-definition with a resolution of 720 x 480.
SGSNServing GPRS Support NodeA network entity, within GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) and 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunication System) mobile networks, that enables mobile internet services through Packet Switched technique.
S-GWServing GatewayAn entity that is part of 4G LTE core network, Evolved Packet Core. It connects 4G base station eNodeB to external data networks through PDN-GW.
SIMSubscriber Identity ModuleA small card with an integrated circuit which can be inserted into SIM-enabled devices such as mobile phones, tablets and data cards to connect them to a mobile network.
SIMOSIM Only (deal)A type of mobile plan where a customer purchases only a pay-monthly SIM card from the mobile operator and uses that in their own device.
SIPSession Initiation ProtocolA communication protocol used for enabling multimedia services such as voice calls, video chat/conferencing and instant messaging over the Internet. SIP is one of the key enablers of Voice over IP (VOIP).
SISOSingle Input Single OutputAn antenna technology used in earlier generations of mobile networks where a single antenna is used to transmit the signal and a single antenna to receive it.
SLAService Level AgreementA contract between a service provider and a customer to establish what service levels and performance standards will be provided to the customer.
SMBSmall Medium BusinessA size-based classification of businesses which takes into account the number of employees within a business and its yearly revenues. A business with 1 to 99 employees and annual revenues of under 50m$ is categorised as small while a business with 100 to 999 employees and annual revenues of over 50m$ and within or up to 1b$ is categorised as mid-sized.
SMESmall Medium EnterpriseA size-based classification of businesses which takes into account the number of employees within a business and its yearly revenues.  As per the European Union, a microenterprise has less than ten employees and revenues of up to 2m€; a small enterprise has less than 50 employees and revenues of up to 10m€, and a midsized enterprise has less than 250 employees and revenues of up to 50m€. In the UK, enterprises with fewer than 250 employees and revenues of up to £25m are categorised as mid-sized while enterprises with less than 50 employees are considered small.
SMESubject Matter ExpertAn individual who is an expert in a certain area of the business or topic and provides advice to the decision-makers within the business.
SMSShort Message ServiceA service that allows a mobile phone user to send text messages to other users over the mobile network. It is a text-only service with a limit of 160 characters (for Latin characters) including alphabets, numbers and symbols.
SNRSignal to Noise RatioA measure used in telecom networks to determine the strength of the desired signal by comparing the power level of the signal to the power level of the background noise.
SoHoSmall Office Home OfficeA very small business located in a home office environment within the owner’s residence with an employee base of less than ten (10).
SoWStatement/Scope of WorkA document that details the scope of a project including deliverables, costs, delivery timelines, acceptance criteria and performance standards for a supplier providing services to a customer.
SPoCSingle Point of ContactAn individual or department who is the point of contact for a certain activity, project or initiative.
SS7Signalling System 7A signalling standard used by telecom switches within fixed and mobile networks that defines how the associated network nodes communicate with each other.
SSIDService Set IdentityThe user name or user ID of a Wi-Fi network that is typically written at the back of the router or modem.
SSLSecure Sockets LayerA security standard used for establishing an encrypted connection between the clients (e.g. web browser) and the servers (e.g. web server).
STBSet-Top BoxA device that enables television to display online content and/or digital television broadcast if connected to the Internet and/or antenna cable respectively.
SU-MIMOSingle-User Multiple Input Multiple OutputA type of MIMO antenna technology used in 4G LTE and 5G NR networks that allows multiple antennas to serve a single user at a time.
SWOTStrengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & ThreatsAn analysis that allows a business to determine its current position with regards to its strengths, weaknesses, potential threats and opportunities which serve as an input towards the future strategy of the business.
TACSTotal Access Communications SystemAn analogue technology that was used for providing the first generation (1G) mobile communications services in the UK and other countries.
TCOTotal Cost of OwnershipA cost estimate, often used by a business prior to a purchase, which looks at the full cost of an asset or solution including the purchase price as well as any other operational costs e.g. maintenance and support.
TCPTransmission Control ProtocolA protocol that governs how the information data should be packaged and delivered from one computer device to another over the Internet.
TDDTime Division DuplexA technique used in mobile networks including 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks where the uplink (mobile to base station) and the downlink (base station to mobile) use the same frequency band however they are allocated different time slots to separate them.
TDMATime Division Multiple AccessA technology used in digital communications such as 2G mobile networks where a frequency channel is broken down into multiple time slots to transmit and receive the information.
TelcoTelecommunications companyA company that provides telephone and other associated services to its customers.
TNTwisted NematicDisplay technology for LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screens, most commonly used in LCD monitors and notebook computers. It supports the quick switching of images when watching fast-moving objects. However, the colours on the screen get distorted when viewed from different angles.
TTMTime To MarketThe duration of time from a product idea being conceived to the product being available on the market to the buyers.
UATUser Acceptance TestingA type of testing usually carried out for a software product after all the functional testing has been completed and when the product is ready to be tested by the intended users. This testing covers test cases from a user-perceived performance and user experience perspective.
UCUnified CommunicationsAn umbrella term which represents a range of communication tools and capabilities that provide a consistent and unified experience across all customer end-points.
UEUser EquipmentAn umbrella term introduced in 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunication System) networks to refer to any device used by an end-user to communicate with the mobile network.
UHDUltra High DefinitionA display resolution used by television and other media device manufacturers which is 3840 x 2160 (8.3 megapixels) and therefore slightly lower than 4K but a lot higher than high-definition (HD).
UIUser InterfaceThe visual part of a computer application that a user interacts with to get access to certain capabilities within an electronic device. It mainly consists of Graphical User Interface (GUI) and command line.
UMTSUniversal Mobile Telecommunication SystemA technology which provides the 3G upgrade path to mobile networks on the GSM track such as GSM, GPRS and EDGE networks. It uses Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) as its radio access network. Look at this post for details: 3G UMTS networks.
UPSUninterrupted Power SupplyA device used by telecom and IT companies to provide emergency power backup in the event of a power failure to ensure uninterrupted network operations.
URLUniform Resource LocatorA web link unique to a resource on the Internet that points to a website or a web page within a website.
uRLLCUltra-Reliable Low Latency CommunicationA use case category in 5G networks that refers to the ability to achieve latencies of as low as 1 millisecond with a reliability of 99.99%.
USBUniversal Serial BusAn interface commonly used by most IT and media devices such as computers, monitors and televisions to connect them to peripherals, accessories and other devices.
USIMUniversal Subscriber Identity ModuleA SIM card designed for 3G UMTS mobile networks that makes the SIM forwards and backwards compatible i.e. allows it to connect to 3G, 4G, 5G as well as 2G networks.
USPUnique Selling Proposition or Unique Selling PointA Marketing concept that focuses on the uniqueness of a product or service and determines what a product or service can offer to the market that the competitors can’t.
UTRANUniversal Terrestrial Radio Access NetworkThe radio access part of the 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) network that consists of NodeB (base station) and Radio Network Controller (RNC).
UXUser ExperienceThe feeling and experience of a user when interacting with all aspects of a specific product or service.
VASValue-Added ServicesThe non-core services from a service provider which increase the customer benefits from a certain product offering and hence lead to additional revenues.
VATValue Added TaxA type of tax paid for the purchase of goods and services mostly in the EU and the UK which applies at every stage of the production of goods and services when the value of goods and services increases.
VGAVideo Graphics ArrayA standard used for video and graphics display with a resolution size of 0.3 megapixels (640 x 480 pixels).
VIRVolume Incentive RebateA type of discount where the customers who buy higher volumes get higher discounts on the purchase of goods from the supplier and are thereby rewarded for buying in bulk.
VLRVisitor Location RegisterA network component within 2G GSM and 3G UMTS mobile core networks that works alongside Home Local Register (HLR) and contains the exact location of subscribers present in the area served by the network.
VLSIVery Large Scale IntegrationA process used in the manufacturing of microchips that allows the integration of hundreds of thousands of transistors into a single microchip.
VoDVideo On DemandA system that provides the ability to select and view live or pre-recorded video content as and when requested (or demanded) by the customer.
VoIPVoice over Internet ProtocolA technology that enables voice calls over the internet as an over-the-top service where the quality of service is based on best effort and hence not guaranteed.
VoLTEVoice over Long Term EvolutionA technology that uses virtually dedicated data packets to enable mobile voice calls over the LTE (Long Term Evolution) network as opposed to dedicated circuits which are traditionally used for voice calls.
VoNRVoice over New RadioThe packet-switched voice calling and messaging capability in 5G NR networks that uses 5G core network and IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS).
VoWiFiVoice over WiFiThe packet-switched voice calling and messaging capability in 4G and 5G networks that establishes a connection via any available Wi-Fi network to connect to a mobile core network.
VPNVirtual Private NetworkA technology used by businesses to protect sensitive company data by adding security and privacy to the connection used for the exchange of information over a less secure network such as the public Internet.
VROMVery Rough Order of MagnitudeA cost estimate provided in the early stages of a project when the scope is not fully defined.
WANWide Area NetworkA group of computers and devices communicating and sharing information within a much larger area than Local Area Network (LAN) and Metropolitan Area Network (MAN).
WAPWireless Application ProtocolA standard that allows wireless devices such as mobile phones to be able to access the internet.
WCDMAWideband Code Division Multiple AccessThe access technology used in the third generation (3G) of mobile cellular networks on the GSM track ( Universal Mobile Telecommunications System aka UMTS) where a single frequency channel of 5 MHz bandwidth is used to transmit the information for multiple users who are each allocated special codes to avoid interference.
WebRTCWeb Real-Time CommunicationA technology standard that enables real-time communications such as instant messaging and video conferencing directly in a web browser.
Wi-Fi 6WiFi 6th generationThe latest generation of Wi-Fi networks based on the IEEE 802.11ax standard that uses the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequency bands. Wi-Fi 6E uses the 6 GHz band.
WiMAXWorldwide interoperability for Microwave AccessA technology standard for high-speed wireless internet as well as 4G mobile networks and uses radio waves to provide high-bandwidth services within large geographical areas.
XMLExtensible Markup LanguageA computer language used to describe the information (data) which can be stored on a computer and/or transported over the internet but requires another application to display the data in the desired format.

        

Here are some helpful downloads

Thank you for reading this post. I hope it helped you in developing a better understanding of cellular networks. Sometimes, we need extra support, especially when preparing for a new job, studying a new topic, or buying a new phone. Whatever you are trying to do, here are some downloads that can help you:

Students & fresh graduates: If you are just starting, the complexity of the cellular industry can be a bit overwhelming. But don’t worry, I have created this FREE ebook so you can familiarise yourself with the basics like 3G, 4G etc. As a next step, check out the latest edition of the same ebook with more details on 4G & 5G networks with diagrams. You can then read Mobile Networks Made Easy, which explains the network nodes, e.g., BTS, MSC, GGSN etc.

Professionals: If you are an experienced professional but new to mobile communications, it may seem hard to compete with someone who has a decade of experience in the cellular industry. But not everyone who works in this industry is always up to date on the bigger picture and the challenges considering how quickly the industry evolves. The bigger picture comes from experience, which is why I’ve carefully put together a few slides to get you started in no time. So if you work in sales, marketing, product, project or any other area of business where you need a high-level view, Introduction to Mobile Communications can give you a quick start. Also, here are some templates to help you prepare your own slides on the product overview and product roadmap.

     

Scroll to Top