DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications) is a flexible digital radio access standard for cordless communications in residential, corporate and public environments.
DECT provides for voice and multimedia traffic, and contains many forward-looking technical features that allow DECT-based cordless systems to play a central role in important new communications developments such as Internet access and interworking with other fixed and wireless services such as ISDN and GSM.
The DECT standard makes use of several advanced digital radio techniques to achieve efficient use of the radio spectrum; it delivers high speech quality and security with low risk of radio interference and low power technology.
TDMA (Time Division Multiple Access) radio access, with its low radio interference characteristics, provides high system capacity to handle up to 100'000 users per km² floor space in an office environment.
ADPCM (Adaptive Differential Pulse Code Modulation) speech encoding ensures a DECT cordless phone very high speech quality, comparable to wireline telephony.
DCS/DCA (Dynamic Channel Selection / Allocation) is a unique DECT capability that guarantees the best radio channels available to be used. This happens when a cordless phone is in stand-by mode, and throughout a call. This capability ensures that DECT can coexist with other DECT applications and with other systems in the same frequency, with high-quality, robust and secure communications for end-users.
Other features of the DECT standard include encryption for maximum call security and optimized radio transmission for maximum battery life..
DECT basic technology and the various profiles enhance the DECT standard, introducing evolutionary applications and services. The GAP profile, for example, ensures interoperability of equipment from different providers for voice applications.
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The DECT standard was designed from the start to support the real-world needs of telecommunications network operators, business organizations and consumers.
Through the utilization of the same basic technology for residential cordless phones (mass-market) up to complex multi-cell systems, DECT has an attractive and competitive cost position. DECT systems require no frequency planning during initial deployment or subsequent expansion. Once the radio infrastructure is in place, additional base stations and cordless terminals can easily and quickly be added.
The radio technology used in the DECT standard permits very high concentrations of users to be served - up to 100,000 users in any km² office area. This makes DECT a powerful solution for densely-occupied office buildings, public and residential areas.
Through the advanced digital technology and unique capabilities like DCS/DCA, DECT very efficiently uses the available radio spectrum in the standard bands (1880-1900 MHz, 1900-1920 MHz, or 1910-1930 MHz). Various applications can share the spectrum, e.g. voice and data, or public and private applications.
The combination of TDMA/TDD digital radio technology and dynamic channel selection with additional encryption techniques, authentication and identification procedures, makes DECT radio transmissions extremely secure against unauthorized radio eavesdropping by third parties. The implemented encryption method enhances the security of DECT to a very satisfactory level.
Speech quality in a DECT system is very high, thanks to the digital radio techniques applied. ADPCM digital voice coding technology also ensures compatibility with ISDN. In a multi-cell system such as a cordless PBX, handover from cell to cell is fully transparent to the user.
The DECT standard will form an integral part of the evolution towards UMTS. It belongs to the IMT 2000 family concept which ensures long-term protection of investment.