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(1) (3rd Generation) The third version of a product or system. See iPhone 3G.

(2) (3rd Generation) The previous generation of cellular transmission, which features moderately high speed for Internet access compared to the very sluggish 2G systems. As 4G LTE technology proliferates, carriers maintain their 3G networks for compatibility with millions of cellphones that rely on 3G technology (for the difference between 3G and Wi-Fi, see cellular vs. Wi-Fi).

Several advanced, higher-speed 3G technologies have been officially sanctioned as 4G (see cellular generations). In the U.S., the major 3G technologies are EV-DO for CDMA networks, such as used by Verizon and Sprint, and HSPA for GSM networks for carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile. See EV-DO, HSPA and 4G.

The Network Makes a Difference
These iPhone speed tests were taken at the same time using AT&T's slower 2G EDGE (E) network and its faster 3G network. Speed is always based on the number of active users in the cell. This test was performed in 2009.
References in periodicals archive ?
We are excited about our new partnership with Datang Mobile for introducing Mobile Entertainment services within China's 3G Mobile Solution Network," said Steve Gladstone, president, NMS Communications Platforms division.
RADVISION and BroadSoft, a leading provider of VoIP application software, will demonstrate interoperability that combines BroadSoft's BroadWorks[R] VoIP application platform with RADVISION's SCOPIA Interactive Video Platform to provide video-enabled VoIP services converged over 3G mobile and landline video phones.
The NXP Nexperia cellular system solution 7210 is a powerful dual-mode UMTS multimedia platform running on a single-core ARM9 for the 3G mobile feature-phone market.
The iPass global virtual network includes 3G mobile data, 75,000 Wi-Fi hotspots, fixed broadband connections and dial-up networks in more than 160 countries.
Through direct integration to the 3G mobile network Vodafone has the capability to deploy innovative services to its mobile Consumer and Enterprise customers.
Interactive visual communications services are an important element of CTM's 3G mobile service strategy," said Vandy Poon, Deputy CEO of CTM.
I look forward to contributing my expertise to the forum and sharing my views about the future of 3G mobile entertainment," said Eberhard Schoneburg, CEO of Artificial Life, Inc.
Its telecommunications sector has continued to witness strong growth into 2006, with the rapid expansion of 3G mobile services and the uptake of Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH) being especially noteworthy.
Demonstration Highlights Secure, Fixed Mobile Interworking Between WiFi Connected Device and 3G Mobile Phone on TeliaSonera's 3G/IMS SIP Infrastructure
Improved fixed-line infrastructure will also stimulate the countrys underdeveloped Internet market, as will the introduction of 3G mobile technology which is currently being trialed.
Teletalk to Introduce 3G Mobile Telecommunications Services in