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Glossary:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A


Airtime
The amount of time a customer spends on a wireless phone, beginning when the SEND button is pressed.

Alphanumeric Display
A message or other type of readout containing both letters ("alpha") and numbers ("numeric"). On a wireless phone, "alphanumeric memory dial" is a special type of dial-from-memory option that displays both the name of the individual and that individual's phone number on the handset. The name also can be recalled by using the letters on the phone keypad.

Analog
A type of radio transmission that broadcasts a voice message intact, via radio waves, thereby tying up an entire channel of communication.

Antenna
A device for transmitting and receiving signals. In a cellular system, antennae are mounted on radio structures at cell sites; smaller ones are mounted on automobiles as part of a mobile phone installation, and directly on wireless phones.

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Battery Pack
The source of power for portable and bag (transportable) phones.

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CDMA
Code Division Multiple Access. A digital transmission technology in which each conversation is digitized and then coded. A phone is then instructed to decipher only a particular code in order to pull a specific conversation off the air. This process is comparable to an English-speaking person picking out the only other person speaking English in a crowded room of French speakers.

Cell
A geographical area, four to 20 miles, surrounding a radio antenna designated for cellular transmission.

Cell Site
A combination of equipment and antennas used in transmitting and receiving radio waves. In a cellular system, antennae are mounted on radio structures at cell sites. Smaller ones are mounted on automobiles as part of a mobile phone installation and directly on portable and transportable cellular phones.

Coverage
The geographic area containing the cell sites that allow the user to make and receive calls. Each cell site has an antenna with the ability to send and receive signals. Coverage area is determined by the number and location of cell sites in the surrounding area. As new sites are added, calling areas are expanded and call clarity is improved.

Cradle
A holder or casing where the customer places the handset of the mobile phone.

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Digital
An advanced type of radio transmission that broadcasts voice or data intact via radio waves, which allows for greater clarity, advanced features and more capacity. The industry uses three types of digital technology: TDMA, CDMA and GSM.

Dropped Call
A call may be "dropped" or disconnected due to a dead or low-charged battery, faulty or poorly connected vehicular antennas, weather conditions or by driving out of a service area. Interference and varying levels of signal strength may also be experienced when traveling near the boundaries of a service area and in enclosed structures such as parking garages, tunnels and elevators.

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ESN
Electronic Serial Number. The unique number assigned by the manufacturer and encrypted on the microchip of a particular wireless phone. This number is entered into the MTSO and used to identify and track that specific wireless phone. The ESN can be compared to a Social Security number for a U.S. citizen.

End Key
A button on a wireless phone that, when pressed, disconnects the call.

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Fraud
A costly problem in the wireless telecommunications industry whereby a user intentionally adjusts a wireless phone in order to make and receive phone calls without paying for them. Fraud has virtually been eliminated in the system that Airpeak Communications runs.

Frequency
A certain "size" of radio wave: The rate at which the electric and magnetic fields of a radio wave vibrate per second.

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GSM
Formerly identified the Groupe Speciale Mobile of the European Telecommunication Standards Institute (ETSI); today it is a worldwide standard. Today it has come to be known as Global System for Mobile communication. A public all-digital cellular network using TDMA techniques for multiplexing and using a transmission band. A GSM network can provide, besides telephony services, short messaging services (SMS) and data communication, in circuit- and/or packet mode.

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Hands-Free
Another term for "speaker phone." Hands-free kits can make wireless phones safer to use while driving and doing other activities.

Hand-Off
The transfer of a wireless phone call from one cell site to the next, as a vehicle travels between cells.

Handset
The device on a wireless phone that has the receiver, the key pad and the display.

Home Service Area
The area where a customer makes and receives local calls, and the bill for wireless service is generated. Also called the "local market."

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iDEN
First introduced in 1994, Motorola's Integrated Digital Enhanced Network (iDEN™) brought to the market next generation wireless solutions designed for a variety of vertical market mobile business applications. Today, iDEN wireless handsets are utilized in a variety of work environments ranging from manufacturing floors to executive conference rooms as well as mobile sales forces.
Motorola iDEN handset users are finding new applications and discovering unique communication solutions every day to help their businesses evolve and grow. For example, Motorola's iDEN solution offers the ability for you to hold a conference with a large number of people, with only the push of a button, helping you eliminate time-wasting and costly individual calls.

In-Use Indicator
A small light on the handset of a wireless phone that illuminates whenever a call is in progress.

Installed Phone
See Mobile Phone.

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Key Pad
Number and function buttons located on the handset of a wireless phone; the user presses the key pad numbers in order to place a call.

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Landline Phone
A traditional phone used in businesses and homes with service provided by the local telephone company.

Lock Key
A special key on the handset that, when pressed, prevents any caller from making outbound calls; used as a security measure to prevent unauthorized use of the wireless phone.

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MIN
Mobile Identification Number. A wireless phone's 10-digit "phone number."

Mobile or Car Phone
A mobile phone is an installed cellular car phone. Since it draws power from the car's battery, battery life is extraordinarily long and talk time is virtually unlimited. Its external antenna offers the best possible reception, and can be mounted on the roof, trunk or any window.

MTSO
Mobile Telephone Switching Office. The central office computerized switching equipment that coordinates and controls the routing and completion of calls in a cellular system. The MTSO connects the cellular system to the wired telephone network.

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No-Service Indicator
A red light on a wireless phone that illuminates when the phone is in an area where no wireless service is provided.

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Off-Peak Time
Non-business hours for wireless use, usually evenings and weekends. (Nevada Wireless tailors its rate plans for Heavy Peak usage to benefit its business customers.)

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PCS
Personal Communication Service. Originally meant to describe digital service offered at a higher frequency than cellular, it is now used as a generic term for all digital wireless.

Peak Time
Primary business hours for using wireless service, often between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Peak times vary by market and by carrier.

Portable Phone
The smallest type of wireless phone also known as a handheld phone. Weighing as little as 4 ounces, it offers the most flexibility and convenience, easily carried in a pocket, purse or briefcase. A portable phone has a built-in antenna, and is powered by an attached, rechargeable battery that provides approximately 45 to 100 minutes of talk time, depending on the type of battery used.

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Send Key
A button on a wireless phone used to connect (or send) a call once the caller dials an outbound number.

Service Charge
The fixed amount a customer pays each month to receive the service, regardless of how often or how little the wireless phone is used. The exact monthly fee depends on the particular calling plan chosen by the customer.

Signal Strength
A gauge of the strength or weakness of a wireless phone's reception to cellular transmission for a specific cell at a specific geographical location. Signal strength (strong or weak) impacts call quality and call completion.

Standby Time
The amount of time you can leave your fully-charged wireless phone turned on before the phone's battery will run down.

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Talk Time
The length of time you can talk on your wireless phone without recharging its battery. A phone's battery capacity is usually expressed in terms of "minutes of talk time" or "hours of standby time." When you're talking, the phone draws more power from the battery.

TDMA
Time Division Multiple Access. A digital cellular transmission method that divides amounts of time on a single radio frequency into parts, then assigns a different phone conversation to each part. This allows a larger number of people to use the cellular system at any one time.

Transportable Phone
Also known as a bag phone, this is a 3-watt wireless phone with some of the features and benefits of both a mobile and a portable phone. When used in a car, a transportable phone can be plugged into the vehicle's cigarette lighter for power. Since it's not permanently installed in a car, it can be moved and used in different vehicles. Though heavier and bulkier than a portable phone, it functions like a portable when powered by its attached battery.

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Voice Mail or Voice Messaging
A "telephone mailbox" that answers a call, plays a greeting and records a message when you're away from the phone or are currently using the phone. After you have retrieved your messages, you can delete them, save them, reply to them or forward them to someone else (or a group of people) on your voice mail system.