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Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution

Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution (EDGE) is a digital mobile phone technology. It might be considered as "2.75G", more advanced than the second generation 2G and more advanced than GPRS which has been labelled 2.5G. This technology is compatible with TDMA and GSM networks. EDGE uses the same spectrum allocated for GSM900, GSM1800 and GSM1900 operation.

Instead of employing GMSK (Gaussian minimum-shift keying) EDGE uses 8PSK (8 Phase Shift Keying) producing a 3bit word for every change in carrier phase. This effectively triples the data rate offered by GSM.

It can carry data speeds up to 473Kbps in packet mode and will therefore meet the International Telecommunications Union's requirement for a 3G network. It also enhances the circuit data mode called HSCSD, increasing the data rate of this service also. EDGE is being introduced into GSM networks around the world in 2003, initially in North America.

Although EDGE requires no hardware changes to be made in GSM core networks, some modifications need to be made in Base Station. An EDGE compatible tranceiver unit must be installed and base station system needs to be upgraded to support EDGE.

EDGE provides Enhanced GPRS (EGPRS) which can be used for any packet switched applications such as an Internet connection. High-speed data applications such as video services and other multimedia benefit of EGRPS' increased data capacity.

See also: UMTS