BRI ISDN - Basic Rate Interface ISDN
Provides two channels per physical line, similar to two standard telephone lines.
Also known as ISDN2 or ISDN2e, and marketed by BT as BT Highway, HomeHighway and
A service or connection allowing large amounts of data to be carried very
quickly, and which can split the available bandwidth into multiple channels. Examples of
broadband technologies are ADSL, CATV and fixed wireless networks (broadband radio).
Previously defined as bandwidth of 2Mbps+ but has become used as a description for
services at 128kbps+ - and shared at that!.
A facility enabling the customer to program a standard telephone line so that
out-going calls to certain numbers, for example international or premium rate services,
cannot be made.
A service which allows in-coming calls to be re-directed to another number.
(Available on all digital exchanges.)
A facility which allows an in-coming call to be sent to a different phone or
A facility allowing a call to a particular extension to be forwarded to another
extension if left unanswered for a specified interval.
A facility which records the numbers dialed by individual extensions.
Telephone systems incorporate a range of features aimed at managing calls in the most
The facility to switch telephone calls between different lines and extensions.
A service whereby a user engaged on a call is given an indication that another call is
being made to that line. (Available on all digital exchanges.)
A feature that allows customers to see the number from which they are being
called before they answer the telephone.
CLI - Calling Line Identification
Provides the called person with the number of the telephone from which an
in-coming call has been made. CLI services allow users to find out the number of callers
or to withhold their number.
A service that allows calls made from any telephone to be billed to a different
telephone or credit card account.
A type of cable with a central wire surrounded by insulation which separates it
from a conductive mesh sleeve, the whole being then covered a protective insulating sleeve
and generally used for conveying television pictures.
Where three or more people in different locations can have a joint telephone
conversation. (Available on all digital exchanges.)
Internet connections range from dial-up connections using a standard telephone
line or ISDN to broadband and "always on" connections such as ADSL, CATV or
leased lines. To get connected an account with an Internet Service Provider is also
Usually used to denote the standard connection to an Internet Service Provider
using a modem, but more generally a non-permanent connection between two computers or
networks achieved over the public telephone network by dialing the telephone number of the
device the remote computer/network is connected to.
A digital subscriber line access multiplexer (DSLAM) delivers exceptionally
high-speed data transmission over existing copper telephone lines. A DSLAM separates the
voice-frequency signals from the high-speed data traffic and controls and routes digital
subscriber line (xDSL) traffic between the subscriber's end-user equipment (router, modem,
or network interface card [NIC]) and the network service provider's network.
EDGE - Enhanced Data GSM Environment
EDGE is a digital mobile technology, expected to be commercially available in
2001. It is faster than GSM, and considered to be the evolutionary standard on the way to
EMS - enhanced messaging service
as the term implies this is an advance on SMS which allows graphics, sounds and
other enhanced features to be incorporated into mobile phone text messages.
A system used in local area networking which allows computers to communicate with
each other and exchange data at 10 or 100mbps and now up to 1gbps.
Provides protection to a network from hacking and unauthorised access by
filtering types of data, sources and destinations.
FIXED LINE TELEPHONY
The term used for wired (copper and other cable) connections.
GPS - Global Positioning System
A satellite system which pinpoints the location of a terminal device. The
position can be shown on a video map for navigation or tracking purposes.
a telephone system which can be integrated with a data network and switched by
computers and routers rather than by traditional pbxs and telephone switches.
ISP - Internet Service Provider
Also known as Internet Access Providers, ISPs are companies or organisations
which provide access to the Internet and/or other Internet related services.
IVR - Interactive Voice Response
A facility where a caller can respond to recorded prompts by inputting number
tones from the telephone keypad, or speaking simple words from a given list (for example,
LAN - Local Area Network
A network that connects computers in one location together, primarily for the
sharing of resources and exchange of information.
A permanently open, high bandwidth line that can be used to give an "always
on" connection to the Internet or between two offices. Typically leased lines are
from 64 Kbps, but can be up to multi-Mbps depending on the size of the organisation and
usage. Also known as a private circuit.
The local circuit connection between the customer and the customer's nearest
telephone exchange office. Usually constructed of copper wires.
MOBILE DATA SERVICE
A service run by the mobile phone networks designed to carry data at a higher
bandwidth than normal GSM voice channels.
A device that translates digital computer messages into the analogue signals that
ordinary phone lines use (and vice versa).
Number portability between operators enables a customer to transfer from one
operator to a second operator and retain the same number, provided the customer remains at
the same address. It is obligatory between mobile operators.
Where a network operator grants access to a network to any service provider who
may reasonably request it, such as by BT to other licensed operators.
A software application running on a network computer which logs and reports all,
or filtered, data packet activity on the network.
PCN - Personal Communications Network
The European digital cellular mobile telephone network, developed in accordance
with GSM standards.
PDA - Personal Digital Assistant
A digital personal organiser, ranging from a simple "databank" to
palmtop and hand-held computers. Popular products include the Palm and Psion series.
A hardware/software device that acts like a telephone exchange, recognising the
addresses of packets of data and routing them over a permanently connected network towards
Inmarsat and low earth orbit (LEO) services.
A facility which brings a contact database and a telephone system together - if a
caller's details are on the database, they will automatically appear on the computer
screen when the call is received.
SDSL - SYMMETRICAL DIGITAL SUBSCRIBER LINE
A digital broadband service over the 'local loop' copper wires which has the same
data capacity upload as download - as opposed to asymmetrical ADSL. The suppliers side
'modem' can be incorporated in the local exchange or a 'raw copper' twin wire can be
leased from BT which connects the customer to a suppliers 'point of presence' and hence to
the Internet backbone.
A powerful computer which may be located in-house or on the premises of a
specialist company, such as an Internet Service Provider. Used to store communal data,
network hardware and software among users, and also to host websites.
An electronic device or amplifier situated between exchanges, or between the
exchange and subscriber premises, which boosts a signal which would otherwise suffer too
much degradation due to distance.
a middleman or agent who finds the best telecom deal for your needs and either
charges a fee to the customer or a commission from the telco.
A public switched low-speed data network used for the transmission of
UMTS - Universal Mobile Telephone Service
A broadband mobile telephony technology, expected to be implemented throughout
2003-2005. It will provide an enhanced range of multimedia services, such as video and
high speed Internet access. Also known as 3rd generation mobile.
A specially adapted or designed telephone which enables the called and calling
parties to see each other during a call.
VoIP - Voice over Internet Protocol
Shorthand for using the ubiquitous Internet Protocol (but not necessarily the
Internet) to make voice telephone calls. Voice calls are carried as data packets over a
combined voice and data network which can be a managed LAN or WAN or less reliably over
the contended Internet. To between a VoIP network and the standard public switched
telephone network a 'gateway' is required.
VPN - Virtual Private Network
A private network provided over the shared public network infrastructure, rather
than via a dedicated link. Used to make inter-site connections for voice or data in the
same way as leased lines.
XML - eXtensible Markup Language
Similar to HTML in format, XML is used to structure the information on a website
in terms of content rather than presentation. Used in many e-commerce enabled websites to
enable transactions to be made.