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Mobile communications refers to a form of communications which does not depend on a physical connection between the sender and receiver and who may move from one physical location to another during communication.
Mobile communications became generally available to businesses and consumers in the 1980s. The pioneering cell phone technologies were analog. Second-generation (2G) wireless devices were characterized by digitized delivery systems. Third-generation (3G) wireless technology represents significant advances in the ability to deliver data and images. The first commercial release of 3G was in Japan in 2001; the technology successfully debuted in the United States in 2003. 3G technologies can easily support multi-function devices, such as the BlackBerry and the iPhone.
Successor technologies, often referred to as 4G, are expected to support broadband speeds that will rival wireline connections such as [fiber optic cable]], with the advantage of complete mobility. 4G wireless broadband technologies include WiMAX and Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks. Both are based on TCP/IP, the core protocol of the Internet.
Wireless technologies that will facilitate broadband deployment and for which spectrum may need to be allocated include: 4G networks; fixed wireless as an alternative to fiber optic cable; broadband on unlicensed frequencies (such as Wi-Fi); high performance mobile devices such as smartphones and netbooks; and cloud computing.