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  • Piggybacking (Internet access)

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    Piggybacking on Internet access is the practice of establishing a wireless Internet connection by using another subscriber's wireless Internet access service without the subscriber's explicit permission or knowledge. It is a legally and ethically controversial practice, with laws that vary by jurisdiction around the world. While completely outlawed or regulated in some places, it is permitted in others. A customer of a business providing hotspot service, such as a hotel or café, is generally not considered to be piggybacking, though non-customers or those outside the premises who are simply in reach may be. Many such locations provide wireless Internet access as a free or paid-for courtesy to their patrons or simply to draw people to the area. Others near the premises may be able to gain access. Piggybacking is distinct from wardriving, which involves only the logging or mapping of the existence of access points.

  • Municipal wireless network

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    Municipal wireless network (Municipal Wi-Fi, Muni Wi-Fi or Muni-Fi) is a citywide wireless network. This is usually done by providing municipal broadband via Wi-Fi to large parts or all of a municipal area by deploying a wireless mesh network. The typical deployment design uses hundreds of wireless access points deployed outdoors, often on poles. The operator of the network acts as a wireless internet service provider.

  • Cellular network

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    Top of a cellular radio tower Indoor cell site in Germany A cellular network or mobile network is a communication network where the last link is wireless. The network is distributed over land areas called cells, each served by at least one fixed-location transceiver, but more normally three cell sites or base transceiver stations. These base stations provide the cell with the network coverage which can be used for transmission of voice, data, and other types of content. A cell typically uses a different set of frequencies from neighboring cells, to avoid interference and provide guaranteed service quality within each cell. When joined together, these cells provide radio coverage over a wide geographic area. This enables a large number of portable transceivers (e.g., mobile phones, tablets and laptops equipped with mobile broadband modems, pagers, etc.) to communicate with each other and with fixed transceivers and telephones anywhere in the network, via base stations, even if some of the transceivers are moving through more than one cell during transmission.

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