What is 3G EVDO?

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  • Written By: Alexis W.
  • Edited By: J.T. Gale
  • Last Modified Date: 12 November 2018
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3G EVDO is the abbreviation for 3rd Generation Evolution-Date Optimized, and it refers to high-speed Internet access via a wireless network. Wireless communication has become essential to many modern businesses and for the modern way of life as people go online to chat or send e-mails to family, friends, and colleagues. Not everyone, however, has DSL or a broadband service outside of the office or school, and not every location offers WiFi. 3G EVDO addresses these concerns because, as a mobile broadband service, it offers totally wireless, always-present Internet service to its users.

EVDO works similarly to mobile phones. For it to operate, it relies on a signal from a cell site, as opposed to a wired line or DSL cable. The modem comes in the form of an air card that functions as the receiver of signals that allow its users to gain access to the Internet. Other EVDO modem formats include USB dongle modems, which are similar to a USB memory stick; PC cards; ExpressCard®, which can be used directly in the computer or laptop; and 3G routers.


Download speeds for EVDO fall in between the range of 400 to 700 kbps, and the network can burst up to a 2MBps speed. 3G EVDO aims to provide wireless solutions to transform the Internet into a wireless, mobile, and convenient system by completely eradicating the need for lines and cables. Access to the Internet is ubiquitous, and all members can be connected anytime, anywhere.

Installing a modem isn’t enough to provide access to the Internet. Consumers must also subscribe to a plan or package to use the service. Verizon Wireless pioneered 3G EVDO’s commercial release in 2003 and expanded to over 125 million users in the United States by the end of 2005. As of 2009, more and more 3G companies are employing the innovative concept to meet the demands of consumers worldwide.

EVDO claims to have advantages over Wi-Fi™. One notable strength includes 24 hour a day, seven day a week seamless roaming. Because the signal can travel on the same cell sites as mobile phones, customers can easily access their corporate virtual private network (VPN) from any location just as long as they can receive a secure and encrypted cellular signal. Customers can also download and run video clips in real-time, and EVDO provides service to customers that live outside of cable-modem or DSL areas.


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Post 2

@JessicaLynn - You probably know about plenty of other 3G formats they've just become so commonplace you don't notice them anymore. A good example of is a mobile wireless hotspot.

A mobile wireless hotspot creates a portable wireless network that a few devices can connect to. Mobile hotspots usually take the form of a USB device or a standalone transmitter.

Even some cell phones can become portable hotspots (though this usually costs extra per month). 3G is also available on devices such the iPad and ebook readers.

3G is pretty much everywhere these days even though 4G has arrived. I think it will be quite awhile before 3G is phased out in favor of 4G.

Post 1

I remember back when the 3G network first came out. I was so amazed I could access the internet and email on my cell phone! I think most cellphones have 3G now but when it first came out it was definitely only on the higher end phones.

I guess I haven't really been paying attention because I wasn't aware that 3G internet had expanded past cell phones to other formats. I'm so behind the times!

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