What are the most popular wireless internet access technologies?

The two of the most popular wireless Internet access technologies are Wireless LAN and Wide-area wireless access network. Let us understand both of them in detail.

WLAN (wireless local area network)

WLAN uses locally placed radio transmitters (base stations) to provide Internet technology. The end devices that are equipped with radio transceivers exchange data with these base stations.

The range of WLAN is limited to a few tens of meters.

Wired Internet is used to connect these base stations to the internet network and thus the base station allows the users of the WLAN to get connected to the worldwide internet.

WLAN is used for internet access in airports, train stations, bus terminals, homes, universities, schools, and offices.

The common protocols used in WLANs are Bluetooth, and WiFi .

The cost of WLAN is less as compared to internet over mobile networks. WLAN are also more power efficient and also provide more reliable data transmission.

Given below is the diagram of WLAN −

Wide-area wireless access network (WWAN)

This kind of wireless technology uses the cellular telephone networks to provide internet access within the network.

In WWAN a single base station can provide internet access within a radius of a few kilometres. More users can be serviced by a single base station.

Generally, mobile users use this kind of internet access technology.

2G, 3G, 4G and upcoming 5G mobile communication protocols are all examples of wide wireless access networks. These communication protocols are more costly and more power consuming as compared to WLAN.

Given below is the diagram of WWAN −