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Information and communications technology (ICT) refers to all the technology used to handle telecommunications, broadcast media, intelligent building management systems, audiovisual processing and transmission systems, and network-based control and monitoring functions.
Although ICT is often considered an extended synonym for information technology (IT), its scope is more broad.
ICT has more recently been used to describe the convergence of several technologies and the use of common transmission lines carrying very diverse data and communication types and formats.
Converging technologies that exemplify ICT include the merging of audiovisual, telephone and computer networks through a common cabling system. Internet service providers (ISPs) commonly provide internet, phone and television services to homes and businesses through a single optical cable.
The elimination of the telephone networks has provided huge economic incentives to implement this convergence, which eliminates many of the costs associated with cabling, signal distribution, user installation, servicing and maintenance costs.