Radio Access Network

What Does Radio Access Network Mean?

A radio access network is a technology that connects individual devices to other parts of a network through radio connections. It is a major part of modern telecommunications, with 3G and 4G network connections for mobile phones being examples of radio access networks.


Techopedia Explains Radio Access Network

The idea, pioneered decades ago, is that a handset or other item can be wirelessly connected to a backbone or core network that transmits over the PSTN system or some other infrastructure. The radio access network gets the signal to and from the wireless end point, so it can travel with other traffic over networks built with a collective and deliberate purpose.

Some types of radio access networks include GRAN and GERAN, which utilize base transmission stations and base transmission controllers to manage radio links for both circuit-switched and packet-switched core networks, as well as UTRAN and E-UTRAN, which often connect end points to the common platforms of the PSTN or the Internet.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.