What is CDMA?
CDMA stands for Code Division Multiple Access. CDMA does not specifically refer to one kind of technology or one network, but for a system of networks that have evolved over time. Each successive version of this network has sought to provide better, faster network access with a larger amount of coverage.
One of the notable things about CDMA technology is that it is the primary type of technology used for cell phones and smartphones in the United States. Cell phone providers that use CDMA technology include Verizon,Sprint, and US Cellular.
This means that for the most part, in the United States CMDA networks have seen more growth, and are likely to provide a much better user experience in terms of the amount of coverage a cell phone is able to receive within the United States. In addition, data might be more accessible, and users may be less likely to experience issues such as dropped calls, depending on the cell phone and the network provider they are using. One of the downsides is that using a CDMA network makes it much more difficult to switch out phones between networks.
What is GSM?
GSM, or Global System for Mobile, is the primary type of technology used for cell phones in the rest of the world. Within the United States, a much small number of network service providers are on the GSM standard, among themT-Mobile and AT and T. That means the amount of coverage an individual may receive when using a GSM-compliant phone may be much more limited.
However, using a GSM-compliant phone also makes it much easier for a user to switch providers or networks, as all that they must do in order to make a switch is purchase a new SIM card for their device. The interchangeability of GSM cell phones, as well as the ability to easily switch between networks, makes them a much more appealing option for international travelers who plan to switch between different networks when on trips to countries that primarily use GSM technology.
This is especially important for those who take frequent trips to Europe. Europe adopted GSM technology in the 1980s and has been on this standard ever since. As the technology is required of network providers by law, users will not find access to CDMA networks in any countries within Europe.
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