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Praise for The Essential Guide to Telecommunications

"From starting entrepreneurs to industry veterans, employees from all kinds of network communications companies have found this primer to be an excellent reference book and interesting reading...the best way to keep current on evolving technology."
—Carol J. Meier, Executive Director, Massachusetts Network Communications Council

"With jargon-free definitions, clear schematic drawings, and its steady narrative drive, The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is a reassuring testament to the human ability to comprehend and communicate at some fundamental level even the most bewildering technology."
—David Warsh, Editor, Economic

"I find this book very useful for my graduate students in business and economics to become familiar with an up-to-date explanation of modern telecommunications."
—Jerry Hausman, McDonald Professor of Economics, MIT

"Annabel Dodd has distilled down the essential elements of digital communications and cogently translated the technobabble of the telecommunications revolution. This fine new edition of her book explains how Internet Protocol-based broadband networks will affect consumers, companies, and communities as the inexorable march of digital technologies continues...."
—Congressman Edward J. Markey, Ranking Member Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer Protection

"Annabel Dodd's Guide is an excellent source of technical information that's understandable to people who never studied engineering. I use it regularly."
—Jon Van, technology reporter, The Chicago Tribune

"The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is probably one of the most useful and well-written books on our telecom bookshelf. Annabel Z. Dodd does a great job in capturing a snapshot of the current telecom industry. Even those with little or no technical training should be able to understand the text. This is the perfect book for salespeople who want to learn more about the products and services they are selling, or for those who just want to keep up to date on the latest in telecom technology."
—William Van Hefner, President, Vantek Communications, Inc.

"As a technology management consultant, I am often required to have hands-on knowledge on a wide range of technology topics. Whenever I need quick and accurate information on telecommunications technology, I turn to The Essential Guide to Telecommunications. I find it to be a very valuable reference."
—Lumas Kendrick, Jr., Kendrick Technology Associates

"The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is a fine guide to the field, readable by anyone, useful to everyone. As a first guide to the field, as a reference, and as a commentary on the history and strategy of telecommunications, it is simply superb."
—Andrew Allentuck, Review Editor, Globetechnology, THE GLOBE AND MAIL, Toronto

"People who enjoy a straightforward view of the ever-changing world of high technology will like this book. I did."
—William Sherry, Product Specialist, Messaging & Mobility Applications, Avaya

"Ms. Dodd continues to provide an excellent and thorough text on the telecommunications industry. As in her previous editions, she presents a good balance of technical- and business-related information that is readily understandable by anyone with an interest in this key component of today's business environment. In her new edition, she has captured many of the recent changes in this dynamic field that will affect every company in the years ahead. I strongly recommend her book to anyone who wants a better understanding of telecommunications"
—Joe McGrath, Vice President, Information Technologies, Sepracor Inc.

"After reading The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, I regret that there is not an Oscar given to authors. ANI, DNIS, ILEC, MMDS—Are you familiar with all of these terms? If you are, then you move to the front of the class. If you are not, then you're among 90 percent of the population that might just be missing out on some of the latest technological advancements that can significantly impact your business and increase your bottom line. It pays to read Dodd's book and gain an insight in this fast-changing field."
—Brad Tuttle, Chief Operating Officer, ITV Direct Inc.

"This book is an excellent resource to understand the technologies used in the data and telecommunications industry. Dodd brings together the descriptions, standards, and history to not only answer "what" but also "why." In particular, those new to the industry will appreciate the clear language and broad scope."
—Brent D. Stewart, Course Director, Global Knowledge

"I have used this book in my classes on Internet and telecommunications policy for years, and each edition is always the best and most thorough explanation of these complex topics. And I always tell my students to keep this book handy as a basic reference on issues that will undoubtedly be part of their careers in the future."
—Gary Chapman, LBJ School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin

The fully updated nontechnical telecom guide for business people and other professionals

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is the world's #1 nontechnical guide to telecommunications. Writing in plain English, leading telecom consultant Annabel Dodd has completely updated this fourth edition to reflect the vast changes in the industry. Dodd explores the new competitive forces, critical industry issues, and important technologies that impact network security, reliability, and the pace of innovation.

  • How mergers and acquisitions are reshaping the industry
  • High-speed Internet from cable and DSL to "last-mile fiber"
  • Phone systems and networks: VoIP, PBXs, the PSTN, MPLS, and more
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, WiMAX, 3G mobile networks, and beyond
  • RFID, sensor networks, personal area networks, and other emerging technologies
  • Converged applications, from multimedia messaging to video-on-demand
  • Globalization's growing impact on the industry

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
The telecom industry has been through years of turmoil, collapse, resurrection. Yet one thing hasn’t changed: the effective use of communications remains pivotal to success. You need to understand your options, the new technologies, the industry. (That’s doubly true, of course, if you’re a sales, marketing, or PR pro representing a telecom or IT company.) This book is your up-to-date, non-technical briefing: no jargon, no hype, just usable knowledge.

Annabel Dodd covers everything from traditional phone systems to the cutting edge, helping you make decisions about high-speed Internet access, wireless, Internet telephony, and much more. She demystifies everything from ringtones to call centers, Bluetooth to tomorrow’s blazing WiMax wireless nets. Best of all, she puts everything in context: what it means to you, as consumer, employee, or investor. Bill Camarda, from the August 2005 Read Only

Jack Woehr

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, Second Edition, by Annabel Dodd, enters my workspace serendipitously. I'm currently contracted to US West (or "US QWest" as the office wag has taken to calling it), so I'm in some position to benefit from the perusal of this volume and to evaluate its content. Executive summary: It's a professional and accurate volume suitable to be presented to novice employees their first day on the job at any company whose core business involves stuffing bits up the line.

There's metal in this book. At a high level, Dodd provides overviews of the myriad of empowering technologies that are heaped together into the telecommunications grid of this continent and our planet. The discussion ranges over switched services, dedicated services, signaling, T-1 to T-3, ISDN, DSL, Frame Relay, ATM, SONET, lines, modems, set-top boxes, the Internet, virtual private networks, PCS, wireless and mobile, satellites, convergence (of telephone and PC, not harmonic), and a good deal more.

There's also wetware interest here. Politics are inseparable from technical evaluation of the network. Legislatures and regulatory bodies dictate to the carriers in the name of preserving the public interest within institutions that inherently possess tremendous powers over access. The Essential Guide contains sections on "Local and Long Distance Providers,""The Bell System Prior to and After 1984," "Evolution from CAPs to CLECs," and a whole chapter on "Local Competition and The Telecommunications Act of 1996." Dodd allows herself a few judicious observations into social implications, such as the effects that merger mania and "cream skimming" are likely to have on universal service. Al Gore even makes a couple of appearances in quotation.

The Essential Guide is pretty current. The map of the surviving RBOCs correctly shows US West's 14-state region, accompanied by the (now erroneous) legend "Purchase by Global Crossing, Ltd. pending)." Which goes to show you that the industry holds surprises even for the experts.

The glossary is adequate in relation to the book, though the bibliography is a little too sparse for a second edition. There's no paucity of telecommunications literature; having delved (for instance) into SONET in sufficient detail to note sideband signaling, the author might have deigned to cite a few tech pieces on this and other protocols, rather than merely list eight other telecom overview books.

Dodd seems to have progressed from industry to academia, rather than the other way around. Her professional bio, (former marketing manager at Bell Atlantic, current faculty member at Northeastern University) suggests that her insights may have been arrived at empirically rather than in the ivory tower. Her book accurately imparts the freighted technical context and dynamic economic and social ambiance of the telecommunications industry in these exiting times from the perspective of a well-informed and technically astute insider. It's a good read.
Electronic Review of Computer Books

Provides an understanding of telecommunications for those with no technical background. Overviews technologies, explains the structure of the telecommunications industry, and profiles industry segments and vendor types. Technologies important in competition for local calling, high-capacity communication, and Internet access are clarified. Intertwined with technical explanations are examples of how the various vendors interconnect their networks. For nontechnical people working in telecommunications, and for people responsible for the administration of telecommunications services for their organizations. The author is affiliated with Northeastern University. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
From the Publisher

Praise for The Essential Guide to Telecommunications

“Dodd’s The Essential Guide to Telecommunications provides the history and context that make a fundamental underpinning of modern business more accessible to technologists and businesspeople alike. This new edition of her primer is an essential reference in the continuously evolving communications landscape.”

—Tom Hopcroft, President and CEO, Mass Technology Leadership Council

“Annabel Dodd has created a mainstay resource in The Essential Guide to Telecommunications. All editions have been written in such a way that nonengineers and engineers alike will benefit from reading. She does the BEST job that I have seen in assimilating all of the changes that are constantly occurring in the telecommunications industry, both technical and regulatory, into one text. When I walk through telecommunications offices, I always see various editions of her book on multiple shelves. If you want one book that provides a concise and encompassing view of telecommunications, THIS is it!”

—Ronny Puckett, Southwest Region Director, National Exchange Carrier Association

“I have used previous editions of The Essential Guide to Telecommunications for some time in my introductory courses in our Information and Telecommunications Systems degree program. As this is a stand-alone IT degree program, we need a textbook with broad coverage of technical, management, and regulatory/policy topics. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications provides that coverage in an accessible and accurate manner. It is one of a very small number of books that I have been comfortable using as a required text in my courses.”

—Hans Kruse, Professor of Information and Telecommunications Systems, Ohio University

“Like many words in our ‘high-tech,’ ‘hard sell,’ ‘order now’ society today, the word ‘essential’ becomes worn and overused. However, in the case of Annabel Dodd’s The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, there is no other word that describes the impact and critical importance of this definitive work. For everyone from laymen in IT and new technologists to experienced network and telecom engineers, this book is a must-have, and therefore essential.”

—Bob Warren, IT Infrastructure Analyst, Parsons

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is probably one of the most useful and well-written books on our telecom bookshelf. Annabel Z. Dodd does a great job of capturing a snapshot of the current telecom industry. Even those with little or no technical training should be able to understand the text. This is the perfect book for salespeople who want to learn more about the products and services they are selling, or for those who just want to keep up to date on the latest in telecom technology.”

—William Van Hefner, President, Vantek Communications, Inc.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is a fine guide to the field, readable by anyone, useful to everyone. As a first guide to the field, as a reference, and as a commentary on the history and strategy of telecommunications, it is simply superb.”

—Andrew Allentuck, Columnist, Financial Post, Toronto

“Ms. Dodd continues to provide an excellent and thorough text on the telecommunications industry. As in her previous editions, she presents a good balance of technical and business-related information that is readily understandable by anyone with an interest in this key component of today’s business environment. In her new edition, she has captured many of the recent changes in this dynamic field, which will affect every company in the years ahead. I strongly recommend her book to anyone who wants a better understanding of telecommunications.”

—Joe McGrath, SVP, Information Technologies, Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

“Dodd’s work has been very helpful in the past in taking complex technical topics and translating them into actionable business items for my MBA students. Her book doesn’t gloss over the details, but rather explains why they are important in the twenty-first century information age.”

—Andrew Urbaczewski, Ph.D., Chair, Department of Management Studies, Associate Professor of MIS, College of Business, University of Michigan—Dearborn

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780131487253
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 7/15/2005
  • Series: Essential Guide Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 624
  • Product dimensions: 6.99 (w) x 9.17 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Meet the Author

Annabel Z. Dodd teaches courses on Wireless Mobile Services and Data Communications in the graduate program of Northeastern University's School of Professional and Continuing Studies. She also gives seminars to leading organizations. Formerly adjunct professor in the Master of Science in Technology Management program at SUNY Stony Brook, she was honored as Professor of the Year for 2000 by the Massachusetts Network Communications Council. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications has been translated into numerous languages, including Chinese, Japanese, and Russian.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Read an Excerpt

8: The Internet

The Internet is a medium that has fundamentally changed the pace of business processes and the way organizations exchange information with each other. Businesses sell, place orders, receive orders, collaborate, train employees, provide customer service and bid for products over the Internet. Consumers commonly use the Internet to exchange electronic mail with family members, pay bills, conduct online stock transactions, calculate income tax returns, make travel reservations, shop and conduct research. They also spend time on the Internet playing games, listening to music and viewing entertainment.

The Internet is a connection of multiple networks. The networks communicate with each other over a suite of standardized protocols, Transmit Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), in which data is broken up into "envelopes" called packets. For the most part, network operators use high-speed routers to transmit these packets. Internet traffic is sent at gigabit speeds. The high-speed lines are the backbone of the Internet. They carry the greatest amount of Internet traffic. The Internet backbone transmits requests for information, entertainment, audio and video broadcasts, email and business-to-business transactions. The different carriers that operate Internet backbone exchange traffic with each other at metropolitan area exchanges (MAEs) and network access points (NAPs).

The Web is a vehicle for multimedia presentation of information in the form of music, audio, video and text. The World Wide Web is not separate from the Internet. It is a way to navigate from resource to resource on the Internet by clicking on high-lighted text or graphics from within browsers. As long as they use World Wide Web browsers, all PCs are compatible with the Web. Users point and click their way from computer to computer on the Internet. Before the World Wide Web was developed, documents on the Internet were available only as text. There were no pictures, no "buttons" to click on to issue commands and no advertising banners. There was also no color; everything was black and white.

Individuals and organizations connect their locations to the Internet via many types of telecommunications services including T-1, T-3, analog lines, digital subscriber line (DSL) services, integrated services digital network (ISDN) and cable TV facilities. Internet service providers (ISPs) aggregate traffic from many users and send it over high-speed lines to the Internet backbone. ISPs maintain routers and servers at their sites. The servers, powerful PCs that can be accessed by many users, perform various functions. They contain customer email, businesses' e-commerce applications and home pages for consumers as well as specialized content such as sports information and online games. Servers are located at hosting sites as well as ISP data centers. Hosting sites, where Web content such as corporate, ecommerce and entertainment sites are kept, have servers with information from, for example, search companies such as AltaVista and online retailers.

The popularity of the Web has made the creation and implementation of technologies that enable sites to handle spikes in traffic and large amounts of traffic imperative. One of these techniques is caching, which spreads content among servers at the "edge" of the Internet, closer to end users. In addition to lowering traffic at each server, caching lowers the cost of bandwidth. It lowers the amount of distance packets travel to access Web pages.

Innovations also have occurred in search engine techniques and formatting email for marketing. Search engines are an important tool for organizing sources of online information. They have become faster and the results are more accurate. Corporations use them in their own Web pages to help employees, potential customers and trading partners find information on the corporate Web. Email is now used as a way to disseminate spam, marketing announcements and newsletters that look similar to Web pages. These email messages use the same method, Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), as used to apply formatting and insert graphics on Web sites.

Despite the technological improvements in the Internet, Internet companies are struggling to find profits. Scores of businesses that operated Web sites have gone out of business. Moreover, it has been generally agreed that advertising as a primary vehicle for underwriting the Internet is not viable. To date, gambling (which is illegal in most states), auctions, pornography, music and games are popular and often profitable on the Internet. While commercial organizations depend on the Internet for contact with customers and vendors, e-commerce where businesses exchange purchase orders and pay bills directly to one another's order entry and accounting systems are in their infancy.

Because the World Wide Web is new, legal, privacy and security questions are being raised that previously have not been addressed in this context. For example, freedom of speech for adults sometimes conflicts with protecting children from unsuitable online material. Online sharing of music and copyrighted articles may interfere with authors' and musicians' rights to earn royalties. In other instances, Microsoft's control of PC operating systems and browsers and AOL Time Warner's market share in instant messaging (IM) may give both companies unfair advantages on the Internet. All of these issues raise interesting questions about privacy, free enterprise and free speech.

World Wide Web technology is used by commercial organizations to create extranets and intranets. Extranets use Web technology to create platforms from which trading partners and customers can communicate. Intranets use the technology for internal portals and browser access to corporate data. The adoption of Internet technologies and protocols for internal use by commercial organizations represents a major impact of the Internet. It has led to faster, more convenient access by employees to corporate information.

The History of the Internet

The Department of Defense's Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) started the Internet in 1969, in a computer room at the University of California, Los Angeles. It wanted to enable scientists at multiple universities to share research information. Advanced Research Projects Agency NETwork (ARPANET), the predecessor to the Internet, was created 12 years after Sputnik, during the Cold War. DARPA's original goal was to develop a network secure enough to withstand a nuclear attack.

The first communications switch that routed messages on the ARPANET was developed at Bolt Beranek and Newman (BBN) in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (BBN was bought by GTE. Bell Atlantic acquired GTE, changed its name to Verizon and spun off BBN as Genuity.) ARPANET's network used packet switching developed by Rand Corporation in 1962. Data was broken up into "envelopes" of information that contain addressing, error checking and user data. One advantage of packet switching is that packets from multiple computers can share the same circuit. A separate connection is not needed for each transmission. Moreover, in the case of an attack, if one computer goes down, data can be rerouted to other computers in the packet network. TCP/IP, the protocol still used on the Internet, was developed in 1974 by Vint Cerf and Robert Kahn. It supports a suite of services such as email, file transfer and logging onto remote computers.

In 1984, as more sites were added to ARPANET, the term Internet started to be used. The ARPANET was shut down in 1984, but the Internet was left intact. In 1987, oversight of the Internet was transferred from the Department of Defense to the National Science Foundation.

While still used largely by universities and technical organizations, applications on the Internet expanded from its original defense work. In particular, newsgroups used by computer hobbyists, college faculty and students, were formed around special interests such as cooking, specialized technology and lifestyles. The lifestyles newsgroups included sexual orientation (gay and lesbian), religion and gender issues. Computer-literate people were also using the Internet to log onto computers at distant universities for research and to send electronic mail.

The Internet was completely text prior to 1990. There were no graphics, pictures or color. All tasks were done without the point-and-click assistance of browsers, such as Netscape and Internet Explorer. Rather, people had to learn, for example, UNIX commands. UNIX is a computer operating system developed in 1972 by Bell Labs. UNIX commands include: m for Get Mail, j for Go to the Next Mail Message, d for Delete Mail and u for Undelete Mail. The Internet was not for the timid or for computer neophytes.

The advent of the World Wide Web in 1989 and browsers in 1993 completely changed the Internet. The World Wide Web is a graphics-based vehicle to link users to sources of information. It is based on a method whereby users "click" on graphics or text to be transferred to a site where information can be accessed. In 1993, the Mosaic browser was developed at the University of Illinois as a point-and-click way to access the World Wide Web. This opened up the Internet to users without computer skills. It is no longer necessary to learn arcane commands to open mail, to navigate from site to site for research or to join chat or newsgroups.

In 1995, the National Science Foundation turned the management of the Internet backbone over to commercial organizations. Commercial networks such as Sprint, UU-NET (now part of WorldCom) and Cable & Wireless carry a large portion of the back-bone Internet traffic. Backbones are analogous to highways that carry high-speed traffic.

Bulletin Board Systems (BBSs)

Bulletin boards were used independently from the Internet. They allowed people with modems connected to their computers to read information and post information on a PC.

Users throughout the 1980s used modems, personal computers, communications software and telephone lines to dial into information on other computers. Many bulletin boards were used for "chats" and to exchange ideas around specific hobbies. For example, callers would dial in and type ideas or experiences they had with new software or computer equipment. The World Wide Web has largely replaced bulletin boards.

Who Runs the Internet?

The Internet is run informally by a number of organizations. Following is an overview of the key ones...
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Table of Contents



About the Author


1. Basic Concepts.

The Transition to Digital

Analog Signals-Slower, More Prone to Errors

Digital Signals

Adding Meaning to Signals-Codes and Bits

A Byte = A Character

Baud Rate Versus Bits per Second-Electrical Signal Rates Versus Amount of Information Sent

Codes-Adding Meaning to Bits

Measuring Speed and Capacity

Broadband Service-Multiple Data Streams

Improving Utilization-Compression and Multiplexing

Compression-Shrinking Data to Send More Information

Multiplexing-Let's Share

Interoperability-Protocols and Architectures

Protocols-A Common Set of Rules

Architectures-How Devices Fit Together in a Network

Types of Networks-LANs, MANs, and WANs

LANs-Local Area Networks

LAN and WAN Devices-Higher Speeds, Lower Prices

Home LANs-Sharing High-Speed Internet Access

MANs-Metropolitan Area Networks . . . Links Within Cities

WANs-Wide Area Networks . . . Links Between Cities

Higher Speed Services for LAN Traffic

Carrier and Internet Service Provider Networks


2. VoIP Systems, Circuit Switched PBXs and Cabling.

Telephone Systems-Voice over IP, PBXs, and Centrex Systems

What Is a Private Branch Exchange (PBX)?

IP PBXs for the Enterprise

Impetus for Change

Architecture of IP-Based Systems . . . How the Pieces Fit Together

Voice Quality and Security

Barriers to Acceptance of Voice over IP

Endpoints-IP Telephones Connected to Layer 2 Switches

PBX Trunks-Switch-to-Switch Connectivity

Demarcation-The Location at Which Telcos Wire Trunks

Circuit Switched PBXs-Proprietary Platforms

Centrex-Telephone Company Supplied Service

IP Centrex-Phone Companies Hosting Voice Over IP

Direct Inward Dialing-Bypassing the Operator for Incoming Calls

Key Systems-Multi-featured for Smaller Organizations

Hybrid PBX/Key Systems

Wireless Options for PBXs

Advanced Applications for Telephone Systems

Call Accounting-Billing Internal Departments

Call Detail Recording for Carriers-Generating Data for Billing

Voice Mail-Storing and Retrieving Messages

Voice Mail Components

Unified Messaging Integration of Voice Mail, Fax Mail, and E-mail

Unified Messaging Systems on the LAN

Multi-application Platforms in Carrier Networks

Speech Recognition


3. Industry Overview.

The Bell System after the 1984 Divestiture

Divestiture of the Bell System from AT&T in 1984

The Decline of AT&T

Independent Telephone Companies- Mostly in Rural Areas

The Emergence of Local Competition Prior to 1996

Competitive Access Providers (CAPs) to Bypass Access Fees

Uneven Competition for Local Telephone Service Throughout the U.S.

The Critical Nature of Facilities

Factors Leading to Passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996

Wireless Services for Local Exchange Service-Spectrum Auctions

The Telecommunications Act of 1996

Universal Service Fund-Affordability and Availability

Post Telecommunications Act of 1996 Developments

FCC Rulings, Legal Challenges, and Progress Toward Deregulation

FCC Enforcement of Access to Local Networks after Bells Gain In-Region Long Distance

Impact of the Telecommunications Act of 1996

State of the Industry . . . Key Segments

Regional Bell Operating Companies (RBOCs) Post-1996 Mergers

Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers (ILECs)



Wholesale Carriers-Carrier-to-Carrier Sales

CLECs-A Dwindling Industry Segment

CLECs-Local, Data, and Long Distance Services

Pending Purchase of AT&T and MCI-The Impact of Consolidation

Shrinking Numbers of Competitors-Financial Turmoil

What Went Wrong?

Intermodal Competition-Cable TV, Wireless, and Utilities

Cable TV Multiple Service Operators (MSOs)-Wired to the Max

Mobile Wireless Services

Utilities-The Third Pipe

Regulatory Issues

Unbundled Network Elements (UNEs)-Competitors Leasing Parts of RBOCs' Networks

The Impact of Higher Leasing Rates

Regulating Cable Modems-Cable, Information, or Telecommunications Services?

Voice Over IP-Regulatory Issues

Access Fees-A Shift in Balance Between Local and Long Distance Costs


4. VoIP, the Public Switched Telephone Network, and Signaling.

Convergence in Public Networks

Circuit Switching-Network Inefficiencies and Convergence

Impediments to Adoption-Training, Embedded Assets, User Adoption, and Fear of the Unknown

VoIP Networks-Putting the Pieces Together

Softswitches-Standards-Based Platforms for Call Control

Media Gateways (Border Elements)-Switching and Interoperability Between Networks

Peer-to-Peer Music, Instant Messaging, Online Games, and VoIP

Outsourcing-The Role of IP

Voice Over Broadband for Residential Consumers

Voice Over IP Service in Homes

Customer Acquisition-Agents, Retail Outlets, and

Document Sharing and Online Webconferencing

Webconferencing to Share Documents

The Public Switched Telephone Network

Switched Services-Local and Long Distance Calling

Attributes of Real-Time Switching Services

Store-and-Forward Switching-Nonsimultaneous Sending and Receiving

"The Last Mile" or Access Networks

End and Tandem Central Offices

Wireless Local Loop-Low Customer Acceptance

Broadband Over Power Lines-Telephone Signals Over the Same Fiber that Carries Electricity

Carrier Hotels-Interconnecting Carriers and Providing Secure Space for Equipment

Interconnections Between Carriers-Transport

Signaling-The Glue that Holds the PSTN Together

Overview of Signaling-Uniform Signaling Developed by AT&T

Signaling System 7-Links Between Carriers

SS7 Components

5. VPNs and Specialized Network Services.

Virtual Private Networks-Remote Access and Interoffice Connections

Rationale for Virtual Private Networks Between Offices

Productivity Away from the Office-VPNs for Remote Access

Virtual Private Network Technology

Security-Firewalls, Protection Against Viruses, and Other Attacks

Frame Relay-A Shared Wide Area Network Service

Access to Frame Relay-56 Kilobits to T-3

Frame Relay to Access Other Networks

Frame Relay Service-Permanent Virtual Circuits and Committed Information Rate

Voice on Frame Relay-Instead of Private Lines

Dedicated, Private Lines

Dedicated Services-Wide and Metropolitan Area Networks

Network Topologies-How Sites Are Connected

T-1-24 Paths and T-3-672 Paths Over One Telephone Circuit

T-1: 1,544,000bps; E-1: 2,048,000bps Speeds

T-3, J-3, and E-3-North America, Japan, and the Rest of the World

A Fat Pipe for Data-Unchannelized T-1

T-1 Inefficiencies-Time Slots Running on Empty

CSU/DSUs-Digital Modems: Testing and Clocking

ISDN-Integrated Services Digital Network

Basic Rate Interface ISDN-Higher Usage in Europe and Japan Than the United States

Primary Rate Interface ISDN-23 Bearer and One Signaling Channel

NT1s and TAs: Modem-Like Devices for ISDN

Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)-An Interim Technology or a Vehicle for Video and IP?

The DSL Marketplace

Business Class DSL-Static IP Addresses

DSLAMs-Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexers

Television Over DSL Service-ADSL2+ and VDSL2

DSL-No Truck Roll; Self Service

Gigabit Ethernet

Ethernet Sales Channels

Challenges to Wider Deployment

Multiplexers Equipped with Reconfigurable Optical Add and Drop Multiplexers (ROADMs)

Ethernet Enterprise Service-Internet, VPN Access, and Private Lines

ATM-Asynchronous Transfer Mode

ATM's Speed Is Due to Three Characteristics

DSLAMs and ATM-Oversubscription

Mapping IP and Ethernet Traffic onto ATM

Elements of an ATM Network

SONET-Synchronous Optical Network

Optical Carrier (OC): North American; Synchronous Transport Mode (STM): International

SONET Rings-For Greater Reliability

Second Generation-Next Generation SONET

SONET with Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing Capability

Third Generation SONET-Connectivity to Ethernet

SONET Offerings for Enterprises




6. Entertainment, Cable TV, and Last-Mile Fiber Systems.

Cable Multiple System Operators (MSOs)

Cable TV Architecture-Upgrades, Capacity, Speed, and Reliability

Cable TV Offerings

Set-Top Boxes-Interfaces to Satellite TV and Cable TV

Direct Broadcast Satellite TV-Reaching Customers Wirelessly

Broadcast, Over-the-Air Television

Towers-Terrestrial Wireless Transmissions

Affiliates-Transmitting Programming to Consumers

Digital Television-Less Spectrum Used, Improved Quality

Digital Cable TV-Lower Resolution Than HDTV

Digital TV Standards Worldwide

Digital Delivery-Entertainment over the Internet

U.S. Postal Mail with E-commerce for Movie Delivery

Digital Radio-Subscription Versus Advertising Support

HD Radio--High Definition Radio

Passive Optical Networking

PONs-Fiber to the Premises, Curb, Basement, or Neighborhood; FTTx

Passive Optical Network Standards

7. The Internet.

The Evolution of the Internet

UNIX, Telnet, and File Transfer Protocol

World Wide Web-Based on the Client Server Model

Internet Advisory Boards

Peering-To Exchange Data Between Carriers

ISPs: With Software Platforms for Enhanced Offerings

Hosting-Outsourcing Web Pages

Messaging and the Growth of Spam

Multimedia Attachments-Photographs, Movies, and PowerPoint

E-mail Formatted in HTML-Another Vehicle for the Spread of Viruses

Spam-Clogging Inboxes with Junk Mail

Interactivity Tools: Usenet, Chat, Mailing Lists, and Blogging

Internet Addresses

Registries-Management of Entire Top-Level Domains

Registrars-Assigning Domain Names to Organizations

Thirteen Root Servers Worldwide-The Basis for Internet Routing

Assignments of Numeric IP Addresses to ISPs and Carriers

Public and Private IP Addresses

Portals, Search Engines, and E-commerce

Portals-The Door to the Internet

Search Engines-Vehicles for Advertising Revenue

Electronic Commerce

Advertising on the Web-Instant Access to Offers

Popular E-commerce Sites

Privacy Concerns, Commerce, and National Security

Freedom of Speech, Access to Information, and Protection of Children

Intranets and Extranets

Intranets-Web Technology for Corporate Access

Extranets-Web Access for Customers, Partners, and Vendors


8. Mobile Services.

The Development of Cellular Networks

Cellular, Wireless, Cordless, and Mobile

Precellular Mobile Networks

First Generation Analog Cellular-Advanced Mobile Phone Services (AMPS)

Second Generation Digital Mobile Air Interfaces

Spectrum and Rights to Airwaves


Ranges of Frequency-Spectrum Blocks

Spectrum Caps-Limiting the Amount of Spectrum Per Carrier


Implication of Spectrum Ranges

Spectrum for Higher-Speed 3G Services

Unlicensed Spectrum for 802.11 and WiMAX

Multiband Versus Multimode

Mobile Carriers

The United States




The Structure of Second Generation Digital Mobile Networks

A Cell Site-Connections Between Customers and Mobile Networks

Switching and Signaling

Coverage Gaps-Rural Locales, Inside Buildings, and Congested Metropolitan Areas

Number Portability-Wireless to Wireless and Wireline to Wireless

Roaming Using Mobile Devices in Other Networks

Push-to-Talk-Mobile Walkie-Talkie Service

Enhanced 911

The Criticality of Mobile Networks-Emergency Preparedness

Evolving to Third Generation Packet Networks

Comparing Third Generation Technologies

The Transition to WCDMA-GPRS and Then EDGE

WCDMA-Wideband Code Division Multiplexing

The Evolution to CDMA2000 1X (Voice and Data) and CDMA2000 1xEV-DO (Data Optimized-High Data Rate)

3G Compatible Handsets-Multimode Capabilities for Roaming

The Path to IP Converged 3G Networks

802.20: IP Mobile Broadband Wireless Access-MobileFi

Mobile Networks for Video-Using Incompatible Technologies

Mobile Commerce, Enhanced Services, and Operating Systems

The Battle for Operating System Dominance

Camera Phones

Ring-Back Tones-Mobile Music Instead of Ringing

Mobile Commerce-Mobile Devices to Make Purchases

The IP Multimedia System and Interoperable Multimedia

3G Applications for Enterprises

Specialized Mobile Radio-Slow-Speed Packet Data and Push-to-Talk

Specialized Mobile Radio-Packetized Data Networks for Two-Way E-mail and Field Services

Satellites and Paging

Satellite Networks

Satellite Telephones-For Emergencies and Remote Areas

VSAT Service-Small Satellite Dishes

Paging Services

9. Wi-Fi, Wireless Broadband, Sensor Networks, and Personal Area Networks.

802.11 Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs)

The Terms 802.11, WLAN, and Wi-Fi

The Criticality of Standards

The Main Standards: 802.11a, 802.11b, and 802.11g

802.11n-Improving Range (Area Covered), Capacity, and Data Rates

WLAN Infrastructure: Access Points and Switches

In Enterprises

Hotspots-Wi-Fi Inside Public Places

In Homes-To Avoid Running Cables

Wi-Fi Networks for Voice Over IP (VoIP)

Managing Security on WLANs

Compared to 3G: Mobility, Coverage, and Data Rates

Broadband Wireless Access

WiMAX: Broadband Access, Based on 802.16

Adapting 3G for Wireless Broadband Access: UMTS TDD and WCDMA

Personal Area Networks (PANs)


Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

Ultra-Wideband-High-Speed, Short Distance Links

Sensor Networks-The 802.15.4 Standard

ZigBee-A Protocol For Sensor Networks





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The world has changed since the previous edition of this book was published in 2001. People are more mobile, and carriers and customers use more of the technologies such as voice over IP and high-speed networks that were discussed as emerging services in earlier editions. The world has become smaller as a result of the increasing availability of high-speed networks, and changes are occurring in developing countries as well as Europe, North America, and technologically savvy countries in Asia and the Middle East. Increasingly, carriers that build and support these networks are large conglomerates with worldwide scope. Many carriers are expanding internationally and merging to achieve growth and economic clout.

However, growth, competition, and expanded Internet access present challenges to customers and carriers. These challenges include security risks and competitors' abilities to differentiate their services without entering into pricing wars with attendant low margins. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, Fourth Edition tracks technological advances and delineates challenges carriers face. It examines these issues in both wireline and wireless services.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications examines technological and business issues. It provides real-life examples of how consumers, small- and medium-sized organizations, and enterprise customers use technologies. It also discusses critical factors that influence customers' and carriers' adoption of new technology. Technologies covered include voice over IP, personal area wireless networks (PANs) that cover short distances within buildings, Wi-Fi wireless networks, high-speed wireless broadband, and next generation mobile services.

The Fourth Edition examines next generation wireless mobile technologies capable of carrying vast amounts of high-speed data and video traffic. It also discusses basic cellular technologies and technological advances enabling one-third of the world's population to afford and own mobile phones. Mobile services provide low-cost, basic voice service in large parts of the world where in many instances a mobile phone is the first phone that customers own. In addition to exploring trends, the book provides a high-level overview of the architecture of next generation and current cellular networks, including mobile switches, softswitches, media gateways, and base stations.

It also explains new wireless technologies used in sensor networks to control heating, lights, inventory levels, and manufacturing processes. It compares the differences and similarities between wireless technologies such as Zigbee, Bluetooth, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) in terms of the technological differences as well as the way these technologies are used.

The significance of a strong telecommunications infrastructure on the economy and on international trade is widely recognized and has prompted governments' attention worldwide. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications reviews regulatory issues that are of concern to carriers and governments. It explores the role of regulations in promoting innovation and competition and robust networks critical to national security. In addition, regulatory rulings are examined in light of their impact on customer segments and carriers.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications presents profiles of industry sectors including cable TV providers, incumbent telephone companies, wireless carriers, Voice over IP carriers, and competitive local exchange carriers. It explores strategies carriers deploy to gain a competitive edge and the network technologies used to further these strategies. In addition to looking at the architecture of wireless networks, the book depicts networks based on Internet protocol (IP) as well as traditional circuit switched and signaling systems that tie networks together and link applications to users. It also explores how IP networks are connected to other carriers' IP networks and to public switched telephone networks.

In addition to wireless services and the structure of carriers' networks, The Essential Guide to Telecommunications analyzes equipment and technologies used in enterprises and in homes. It explains how converged telephone systems are used—their architecture and the connection to applications such as speech recognition, instant messaging, and multi-media messaging. Also, the impact of and technological advances in local area networks and fiber optic cabling are explained.

The language and significance of important telecommunications technologies are explored. It is not intended to be a deeply technical book. Rather, it is an overview of technologies and an explanation of the structure of the telecommunications industry. It also includes quotes and interviews with staff at key organizations, who express their views of how technologies, the Internet, and regulations have impacted and will continue to influence the industry.

This book is intended for nontechnical people who work in the field of telecommunications, teach at and attend classes at educational institutions, and those responsible for the administration of telecommunications services for their organizations. The intended audience includes regulatory staff, salespeople, attorneys, researchers, marketing personnel, human resources professionals, project managers, instructors, telecommunications managers, and high-level administrators.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications starts out with interpretations of fundamental concepts so that readers will have a basis for understanding more complex, new telecommunications services. It examines the structure of the industry, local competition, regulatory proceedings, the Internet, convergence, and wireless services.

Along with explanations of technology are examples of applications and historical highlights. How the industry evolved and how the technology changed is explained. The stories and descriptions that accompany the technical details are key to the book.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Enormous changes in telecommunications occurred in the two years between the second and third editions of The Essential Guide to Telecommunications. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications is intended as a road map clarifying technologies, history and trends in telecommunications. Technological innovations in fiber optics and attendant lower costs has led to the construction of vast networks. The book contrasts the glut of these fiber optic networks in long distance routes and some urban areas with their scarcity in developing countries, rural and most suburban regions.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications explains how technology and regulatory factors impact each other. Deregulation and the presence of competition have resulted in the development of technological innovations. These innovations, particularly those in gigabit Ethernet and optical switching, are examined.

Cellular service has grown tremendously in the last decade. It is a key technology for providing basic voice service in large parts of the world. The book examines technologies used to provide greater capacity for basic voice service in fast growing urban areas, rural communities and tall skyscrapers. It also explains the advanced cellular technologies for transmitting higher speed data and accessing the Internet over wireless networks. It also addresses the concerns about safety. It is not known what impact fears about cancer and driving safety will have on the cellular market.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, third edition reviews telecommunications in Europe, Asia and Latin America, as well as in developing countries, and thewide-reaching impact of wireless technology in these areas. Deregulation of local long distance and international services, as well as industry structure and major carriers, are covered. The structure of the telecommunications industry and steps in deregulation are examined in key areas of the world. The pace of adoption of technologies, such as high-speed Internet access, also is highlighted. The significance of a strong telecommunications infrastructure on the economy and on international trade is widely recognized and has prompted governments' attention worldwide.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, third edition presents profiles of industry segments and vendor types to provide readers an understanding of the industry. The roles of Internet service providers, backbone Internet providers, competitive local exchange carriers, utilities and cable TV companies are explained. The number of network providers and resellers and the fast pace of mergers has created new layers of complexity. In addition, regulatory rulings and the Telecommunications Act of 1996 are examined in light of their impact on consumers, commercial organizations and carriers.

The language and significance of important telecommunications technologies are explored. The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, third edition is not intended to be a deeply technical book. Rather, it is an overview of technologies and an explanation of the structure of the telecommunications industry. Technologies important in competition for local calling, high-capacity communications, third generation wireless services and Internet access are clarified. Intertwined with high-level technical explanations are examples of how the various vendors interconnect their networks. The book explains key technologies and options available for small and large organizations and consumers. It further explores significant trends, applications and the impact of the Internet.

This book is intended for non-technical people working in the field of telecommunications, laymen interested in learning more about the field and people responsible for the administration of telecommunications services for their organizations. They include regulatory staff, salespeople, law firms, research organizations, marketing personnel, human resources professionals, project managers, telecommunications managers and high-level administrators.

The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, third edition starts out with interpretations of fundamental concepts so that readers will have a basis for understanding more complex, new telecommunications services. It examines the structure of the industry, local competition, regulatory proceedings, the Internet, convergence and wireless services.

Along with explanations of technology are examples of applications and historical highlights. How the industry evolved and how the technology changed is explained. The stories and descriptions that accompany the technical details are key to the book.

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