Code Division Multiple Access

Code Division Multiple Access

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Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) is a type of digital cellular technology that uses spread spectrum techniques to allow multiple devices to send and receive data simultaneously over the same frequency band. CDMA accomplishes this by assigning a unique code to each concurrent transmission and spreading it over the available bandwidth. The receiver then uses the same code to extract the original data.

In CDMA, each conversation is modulated, in real-time, with a unique code that makes it different from the others. This way, multiple conversations can happen at the same time on the same channel, without interference. CDMA is an example of a multiple access protocol, which determines how multiple users access the network resources at the same time.

One of the key advantages of CDMA is its capacity and performance in situations where there are many users. By effectively managing the available spectrum, it can support a large number of users within a given frequency band.

CDMA was widely used in 3G cellular networks. The most notable standards that use CDMA include CDMAOne (IS-95) and CDMA2000.

However, for 4G and 5G technologies, the industry has largely shifted towards a technology called OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access), which is used in LTE (Long Term Evolution) and 5G networks. Despite this, CDMA is still in use in some areas and in certain applications, especially where 3G networks remain operational.

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