This page provides a reference to common
technical acronyms and expressions used on this site.
If you've ever wondered
what a technical term used on this means, or want details on the acronyms
used, this is the place to find that information.
We're looking to add new definitions, so please contact us with your suggestions...
|APN||Mobile||APN stands for 'Access Point Name'. Users of mobile phones have to enter an APN to connect to a data service over GPRS. You'd use an APN for connecting to the mobile Internet from a data-enabled mobile phone. For more information, and a list of UK APN settings, see our GPRS page.|
Bits-per-second. Here are some examples of the maximum data transfer rates you can expect for certain technologies:
|IMAP||When talking about an IMAP address, you're referring to an address needed to connect to an email service to collect your mail. IMAP is less common than POP, and has some improvements over POP, such as support for email folders.|
|EDGE||Mobile||EDGE stands for Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution. It's a mobile data service, most commonly used on mobile phones for accessing the Internet on the move. It's an enhancement to the GPRS data service, providing speeds faster than standard GPRS, but slower than the newer 3G mobile data services.
More information: Mobile Internet , HSDPA USB modems , 3G networks
|GPRS||Mobile||GPRS, standing for General Packet Radio Service, is a method of passing data over a mobile phone network. Before GPRS, the standard method of surfing the net, getting emails or, most commonly, using WAP on a mobile phone was done using the circuit-switched method, in other words, dialup. For more information, see our GPRS page. GPRS is slower than the newer 3G mobile data services. 3G network information|
|HSDPA||Mobile||Stands for the snappy 'High-Speed Downlink Packet Access', and is a mobile data service that offers download speeds faster than the original 3G data service. You can download at speeds of either 1.8 Mbps or 3.6 Mbps, depending on how the mobile phone network operator has deployed the service.
The major UK network operators started rolling out HSDPA in 2006. Ahead of the game at the time were T-Mobile, with their data-friendly web-and-walk tariffs.
More information: Mobile Internet , HSDPA USB modems , More on 3G.
(International Mobile Equipment Identity) is a unique number used
to identify your handset. Effectively, it's the serial number. All
mobile phone users should keep a note of their IMEI number, as it's
very handy if the phone is lost or stolen.
The number can normally be found under the battery (looking something like 3500 1234 1234 123). You can also get this number from the phone software, by entering '*#06#' as if you were entering a phone number. For more information, see our Mobile Phone FAQ.
IP stands for Internet Protocol. Think of an IP address as code that's used to locate content, servers and computers around the world.
For more, see our IP Addresses Page
|GSM||Mobile||Standing for 'Global System for Mobile Communications', this refers to the current 2G mobile phone network. The context that many visitors to the site will see this, is when setting up a WAP connection on a mobile phone, where there is a prompt to connect to a WAP service via 'GSM or 'GPRS'. In this case, you'll either be connecting via a dialup data service (with a phone number), or using an APN to connect without a phone number using the newer GPRS packet-based connection method. For more, see GSM World.|
|MAC code||Internet||This stands for "Migration Authorisation Code", and is a unique code that identifies your Broadband Advice Internet connection. If you decide to change Broadband provider, you need to contact your existing Broadband provider to get your MAC. You then pass this to your new provider, and it allows them to transfer your Broadband service.|
|OS||Computing||Operating system - the software that powers something computer-based. Windows and MacOS are the obvious examples of desktop computer operating systems. For handheld PDAs, you have Pocket PC, PalmOS and Symbian OS. On mobiles, you have Symbian OS and Windows Smartphone, as well as a collection of other operating systems.|
|Passcode||Bluetooth||In order two 'pair' one Bluetooth device to another, a passcode has to be exchanged between the two devices. When you first connect, one machine will ask you to enter a passcode... enter any 4 digit number. The other device will then ask you for a passcode. Enter the same 4 digit number. It doesn't matter what the passcode is, as long as you enter the same number at both ends. For details, see our Bluetooth page|
Stands for Post Office Protocol. When talking about a POP server address, you're referring to an Internet address needed to connect to an email service to collect your mail. If you have an email account with, say, TalkTalk, then you'd need to connect to TalkTalk's POP3 server, which is pop3.talktalk.net, in order to collect your emails.
More on POP3 on our UK email settings page
|PUK||Mobile||PUK stands for 'Pin Unlock Code', and has to be entered if you've wrongly entered your SIM's PIN code on your handset more times than you're allowed. For help on getting your PUK code, see our UK PUK Help Page|
|Session Mode||WAP||If you come across this, chances are you're setting up WAP (Mobile Internet) from a mobile phone. You'll have a choice of Temporary or Permanent. We have details on this in our WAP FAQ.|
|SIM card||Mobile||SIM stands for Subscriber Identity Module, and a SIM card is a small memory chip that can store between 16k and 64k worth of data. The SIM Card is inserted into a mobile phone handset and is required for the phone to talk to the network operator (e.g. Vodafone, o2, etc). The chip contains a unique ID (known as an IMSI) that network operator uses to identify you and your handset to the network. There's also storage space for SMS text messages and address book information. More details: SIM Card|
|SMS||Mobile||Short Message Service (better known as "texting"). For more on SMS text messaging, see our SMS page.|
|SMTP||Stands for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. When talking
about an SMTP address, you're referring to an Internet address that's needed to send
an email via a company or Internet provider's email server. If you have an email account with,
say, TalkTalk, then you'd need to connect
to TalkTalk's SMTP server, which is smtp.talktalk.net in order
to send an email.
For help with SMTP, see our Connect FAQ.
More on SMTP on our UK email settings page
|SSL||Internet||Stands for Secure Sockets Layer. A secure way of transmitting documents over the Internet. Uses public and private keys to encrypt and decrypt data.|
|UMTS||Mobile||Standing for 'Universal Mobile Telecommunications System', this is a high-speed data network over the mobile phone network... better known to end users as 3G. 3G offers Internet connectivity at speeds faster than GPRS.
More information: Mobile Internet , 3G USB modems , Our 3G page.
|WAP||Mobile||Standing for Wireless Application Protocol, think of WAP as the Mobile Internet for your mobile phone. A cut-down browsing experience using a basic WAP browser on a mobile phone, and content that's optimised for a mobile phone network. More on our WAP page|
|WebDAV||Internet||WebDAV stands for 'Web-based Distributed Authoring and Versioning'. This is a protocol that allows users to edit and manage files on remote web servers. For more information, see the WebDAV FAQ|
|wi-fi||Internet||Also known as 802.11b and 802.11g, this is wireless networking over short distances (such as within an office or a home), allowing computers to connect with each other, or a server, without the need for network cabling. For more, see our Wi-Fi page|
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