Mobile Communication Systems

User demand is driving the mobile communication industry to develop faster, more efficient and more comprehensive mobile services. User expectations and use cases continue to grow and ETSI, a founding partner of the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), aims to remain very much part of this evolution of mobile communication systems.

ETSI is proud to have a leading role in the development of mobile communication technologies. The Institute has been in the front line of this work:

  • from the development of the Global System for Mobile communicationTM (GSM) specifications (2G), through the evolved technologies such as High Speed Circuit Switched Data (HSCSD), the General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) and Enhanced Data rates for Global Evolution (EDGE),
  • over the introduction of the Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS, 3G) in 3GPP and its evolution via High Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) and Enhanced Uplink/High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA)
  • over the introduction of Long Term Evolution (LTE) and LTE Advanced (4G) in 3GPP
  • up to ongoing development in 3GPP of the 5th generation (5G)

Today, these mobile communications technologies serve billions of users throughout the world. That sort of success would be impossible without standards, and illustrates the huge potential of well-managed standardization programmes.

Mobile overview

The pages in this part of the ETSI website provide an overview of various aspects of mobile communications technologies. The 3GPP site contains much more detail, including the specifications themselves, all available free of charge.

A full list of published ETSI standards on mobile communications in the public domain is accessible via the ETSI standards search. Via this interface you can also subscribe for alerts on updates of ETSI standards.

Several collections of historical documents charting the development of mobile communications standards are available exclusively to ETSI members via our Webstore.