Cellular Digital Packet Data (CDPD) is a technique used for transmitting small chunks of data, commonly referred to as packets, over the cellular network in a reliable manner. It allows users to send and receive data from anywhere in the cellular coverage area at any time, quickly and efficiently. CDPD technology provides extensive, high speed (data can be sent over the Airlink at a rate of 19.2 kilobits per second), high capacity, cost effective data services to mobile users. With this technology, both voice and data can be transmitted over existing cellular channels. Wireless "data" communications will soon be just as commonplace as the currently popular office and desk top applications are replaced by a mobile professional with a portable and (various) hand held devices. To facilitate this evolution 1: Advanced mobile data technology is being deployed by cellular service providers, thereby making the service more reliable, useful and cost effective, and 2: Business benefits are being identified and cost justified by early adopters across numerous market segments. By building CDPD as an overlay to the existing cellular infrastructure, and using the same frequencies as cellular voice, carriers are able to minimize the capital expenditures required to offer the service while offering the same coverage area (footprint) their customer base has grown accustomed to. In comparison, it costs approximately $1 million to build out a new cellular cellsite and only about $50,000 to build the CDPD overlay to an existing site. The CDPD overlay network is made up of a combination of key components that operate together to provision the overall service.
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