GSM GPRS (General Packet Radio Services)

GPRS terminals can provide up to 150-170kbps data speeds downstream, but realistically they currently only have a maximum downstream speed of 50kbps and upstream 10-28kbps.Speeds will also depend on which GPRS version an operator uses, as well as how busy the network is at a particular time.

GSM's new GPRS (General Packet Radio Services) data transmission technology is optimized for "bursty" datacom services such as wireless Internet/intranet and multimedia services. It is also known as GSM-IP (Internet Protocol) because it will connect users directly to Internet Service Providers. 

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One of the main benefits of this new packet-switched technology is that users are always connected, always on-line, and may be charged only for the amount of data that is transported. Voice calls can be made simultaneously over GSM-IP while a data connection is operating - depending on the phone Class and Type.

In a Class 8 device for example, there are four times as many receive channels as there are transmit channels, to accommodate the higher bandwidth demands of data reception. 

A class B terminal means that in the idle mode, there is a choice of whether to make a voice call, which would be with a circuit switched connection or whether to transmit data, which would be sent in a packet format.

Users will also benefit from fast and easy up to 170 kbps data access to different services.

Ericsson for example offers a robust IP end-to-end GPRS solution with open interfaces enabling integration into multi-vendor networks.

The company's GPRS solution also offers leading-edge security for wireless use of intranet and corporate LAN services.

GPRS is a smooth add-on to integrate into existing networks. For new operators, it's also attractive to launch GPRS networks to provide competitive datacom services. 

GPRS roaming 
GPRS roaming is a basic requirement for making future global mobile Internet services possible for GPRS subscribers in other operators' GPRS networks. 

GRX, as specified in the IR.34 recommendations laid down by the International Roaming Expert Group (IREG) of the GSM Association, is a centralised IP routing network for interconnecting GPRS networks. GRX based GPRS roaming has now been implemented successfully for the first time in the world, with a solution that is fully compliant with the GSM Association recommendation. The tests were executed by combining Sonera's GPRS system and Nokia's packet core network by a backbone network solution that uses Sonera's GPRS Roaming Exchange. The solution is also designed to meet the roaming needs of future 3G networks. 

Motorola's GPRS solution introduces two new network nodes into the GSM PLMN (Public Land Mobile Network) - the SGSN and the GGSN. 

A number of new interfaces are added to connect the SGSN and GGSN to the appropriate GSM and non-GSM elements required to provide global packet data service.

Motorola's GPRS infrastructure solution is designed around a powerful IP routing engine, providing operators with a scalable and flexible solution that can tailor the packet switching capability in line with the predicted data subscriber growth.

The SGSN tracks packet capable mobile locations, performs security functions and access control. The GGSN interfaces with external packet data networks (PDNs) to provide the routing destination for data to be delivered to the subscriber's mobile terminal and to send mobile-originated data to its intended destination.

The GGSN is connected with SGSNs via an IP-based GPRS backbone network. The PCU performs radio functions and GPRS network functions. The PCU interfaces to the OMC-G, base station controller and SGSN.

Earlier in 1999, Motorola and Cisco Systems Inc., the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, announced a strategic alliance to develop and deliver a New World framework for Internet-based, wireless networks. This collaboration will deliver the first all-IP platform for the wireless industry, which unites different standards for wireless services worldwide, and introduce an open, Internet-based platform for integrated data, voice and video services over cellular networks.

GPRS Terminals Launched During 2003

Siemens S55 GPRS

Panasonic GD76 GPRS

Nokia 7650 with Camera

Nokia 3510i MMS

Nokia 3650

Sagem MYX5

Benq 830c GPRS 5+2

Option Globetrotter

GPRS Triband PC Card

Sony Ericsson T600

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