How to Compare Wireless Phone Networks

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The wireless phone networks include GSM, which is primarily Cingular and T-Mobile; CDMA, which is Sprint, Verizon, Metro PCS and many more; and iDEN, which is what Nextel and Southern Link use. Compare the major wireless networks that work in the United States with information from a wireless specialist in this free video on cell phones.

Part of the Video Series: Cell Phone & Cell Phone Providers
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Video Transcript

I'm Ben from The Cell Phone Broker in San Jose, California, and today I'm going to explain to you how to compare wireless phone networks. So, there are three networks in the United States. There is GSM, there is CDMA, and there is I-DEN. GSM has two companies that utilize that technology. That would be Cingular or AT&T, and T-Mobile. That network allows the use of a SIM card, and over 99 percent of the rest of the world uses that network. The second network is CDMA. CDMA is with companies like Sprint or Verizon, Metro PCS, Boost Mobile, and so on. That network is pretty heavy in the United States. That network has been established a lot longer in the United States than the GSM network has, and that means that the internet speed, or data speed, when you go check your email or go web browsing is a lot faster than it would be on the GSM network. So, CDMA is faster in the United States, but since it's not as heavy in the other parts of the world, it doesn't allow you to travel internationally. It's good if you're mainly staying in the United States. And the third network is I-DEN. I-DEN is what Nextel and Southern Link use. In the southern United States, Southern Link uses that network, and all around the country Nextel uses that network. And what that network allows you to do is have the walkie talkie service. Walkie talkie--they also call it direct connect in some places--and what that allows you to do is pretty much have a family radio or something to communicate back and forth. A lot of construction workers and big businesses utilize that network, because it's very fast communication in terms of that walkie-talkie service. However, the setback with that network is that you can not have fast internet speeds, and sometimes your coverage is a little bit limited since it only has a couple of wireless providers running off of it. I'm Ben from The Cell Phone Broker in San Jose, California. You can reach us online at


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