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Cell relay is a network technology for data transmission that uses small data packets of a fixed size called cells. Cells are the basic units of data, and are widely used in common networks for communication. Just like frames, which are data packets of variable size, cells travel from one computer to another over a network. Asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) is a particularly popular form of cell relay, and is based on cell units.
Cell relay uses data cells of a constant size. Frames are similar data packets, but they differ from cells in that they may vary in size according to the requirement or situation. This technology is not secure because its protocols do not support error handling or data recovery. As such, all sensitive and important transmissions may be delivered faster using fixed-sized cells, which are easier to carry compared to variable-sized frames or packets.
Cell relay is very reliable for delivering sensitive information. Switching devices give the exact route to cells as per the destination address embedded in a cell. One example of cell relay is ATM, a popular form used to transmit a cell with fixed size of 53 bytes.