Those who use a smartphone ( especially those who do it for the first time ) at some time have wondered who those letters ( G, E, 3G, 3G +, H, H + or 4G ) displayed next to the time in top, which also shows other information such as call coverage, time, battery, etc …
Provided we have a contracted data rate to an operator, depending on several factors that will be explained later, we will be connected through a technology specific, that will affect us in two main ways:
Internet browsing speed:
Each technology allows a maximum “flow” of discharge ( see websites, youtube videos, check our Twitter, etc … ) and upload ( send messages or photos by WhatsApp, post messages on social networks, etc … ) of information. When we talk about speed in this article, we refer to this.
Consumption and battery life
Each technology requires consumption of battery different, consuming more operating in the higher frequency band ( 3G or GPRS for example ).
We will explain what each one means and maximum speeds at which they work, to understand it easily.
NOTE : The maximum speeds are specified in Kbps or Mbps ( bits ), to pass on to KB / s or MB / s ( bytes ) we must divide by 8, or use the Google converter kbps . Learn more.
When we listed G, means that we are connected by GPRS, the slowest of the range of possible technologies offered data rates of our operators. It is, usually, considered a network 2.5G, a network 2G ( second generation ).
This technology is similar to the old modems 56k that were used in the 90s with flat data rate Internet. Although it is quite slow, you can use to send and receive text messages via apps like GTalk, Whatsapp or LINE without getting desperate.
It, usually, occurs in places with little mobile coverage, garages, basements, Zulus Sysadmin or lifts to which mysteriously do not lose the signal completely.
Theoretical maximum speeds that can reach GPRS are 56 ~ 114kbps ( about 7 ~ 14 KB / s ).
URL | General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
If we listed E we will be connected via EDGE ( EGRPS ), an enhanced version of GPRS. Network is often called 2.75G or 2.8G ( although not official name ), since, depending on the implementation of the operator, it can reach speeds of a network 2G or a network 3G.
Some users use apps like Data on Demand to establish these slow networks while having a locked phone ( unused ). Once unlocked, you regain the high-speed connectivity. It is useful for those who do not need to use high velocities and want to conserve the most from your battery.
The theoretical maximum speed of EDGE is, usually, around 384kbps ( about 48 KB / s ), however, rarely tend to achieve these values. Still a slow network, like the previous one.
URL | Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution (EGPRS).
Called 3G ( third generation ) to use technology UMTS, designed for high-speed data transfers, useful for multimedia content.
Today is often called 3G data rate to any high speed, however, it is more common to use other faster technologies such as HSPA + that most people continue terming 3G.
This type of technology allows more and decent use of the Internet, such as sending mail or view Web