Home Mobile Phones What is GPRS? – General Packet Radio Service

What is GPRS? – General Packet Radio Service

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GPRS - General Packet Radio Service
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GPRS stands for General Packet Radio Service. It is a service/technology introduced in GSM to enable an efficient transmission and reception of data. GSM phones were initially designed to handle voice services. However, with data services becoming increasingly popular it became obvious that a service tailored to efficient data handling was needed. That service became GPRS.

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The problem with basic GSM was that a channel (line/time slots) was dedicated to a user through out the duration of a call (circuit switching). This arrangement though okay for voice calls is inefficient for data services.


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This implies that during data services a time slot will still be dedicated to you even when you are still reading the last data fetched from the GSM network (not using the network). Guess what? You will have to pay for the network connection even though you are not using it.

GPRS solves this problem by allocating a channel to you only when you need to transmit or receive data on the network. Hence you pay only for the data downloaded or transmitted.

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GPRS is the technology behind MMS and mobile internet.

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Paschal Okafor is NaijaTechGuide Team Lead. The article What is GPRS? – General Packet Radio Service was written by Paschal Okafor. The article was last modified: November 9th, 2017

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