Cell in Wireless Communication

Cell in wireless communication is the geographical region that is covered by a transmission facility.

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What is Cell in Wireless Communication?

In wireless communication technologies, the geographical region that is covered by a transmission facility. The term «cell» is most often used in reference to cellular phone technology, but it can also be used in reference to the coverage areas for transmission of cordless telephones, satellite transmissions, wireless local area networks (LANs), packet radio, and paging technologies.

How Cell in wireless Works

Cells range in size from a few dozen meters to thousands of kilometers in diameter, depending on the technology being used, the power of the transmission station, and the terrain topography.

The following table summarizes typical cell size ranges for different wireless communication technologies. These figures are only approximate because wireless technologies are constantly evolving.

Satellite-based systems have by far the largest cell sizes and are rapidly increasing in popularity. Cellular phone technologies in rural areas typically use cells with a radius of 10 to 50 kilometers, while cells in urban areas range in size from 1 to 10 kilometers.

For highly dense urban areas, cell sizes as small as 100 meters can be used, especially in high-tier Personal Communications Devices (PCD) cellular technologies.

Cell Radius Measures by Technology

Wireless Technology Cell Radius
Wireless LANs
10 to 100 meters
Cellular telephone
0.1 to 50 kilometers
0.1 to 1 kilometer
1000 kilometers or more

When a mobile caller using a cell phone passes from one cell to another, the cellular phone system transfers the call to the system servicing the adjacent cell, a process called roaming.