Glossary of Mobile Phone Terms – Helping You to Understand the Jargon
Struggling to keep up with the latest mobile phone jargon? Here’s a glossary of frequently used terms with simple explanations to help get you up to speed.
With technology evolving so quickly, it can be hard to keep up with the latest mobile phone jargon. To help you wade through the techno babble, here’s a glossary of the most frequently used terms with some simple explanations.
The 3G, or ‘third generation’, network [link to 3G/4G networks page] provides ‘Wi-Fi everywhere’, enabling mobile users to make and receive phone calls and access the web on any Internet-ready mobile device.
The 4G, or ‘fourth generation’, network is the latest standard in mobile phone technology Down Under. It provides super-fast download speeds.
Ever noticed how smartphone videos can be a bit fuzzy? Not with 4K. This shoots videos with around 3840 x 2160 pixels, meaning you can enjoy your home movies in crisp detail.
This is one of the most common numbers used to describe screen resolution. The ‘p’ stands for progressive-scan, while the ‘720’ refers to the number of horizontal lines on the display. 720p is usually known as HD or ‘HD Ready’ resolution. Other common resolutions are 1080p (‘Full HD’), 2160p (‘Ultra HD’) and 4K.
Developed by Google, Android is the operating system [link to operating systems page] of choice for all Samsung, Sony, HTC, Motorola and Google mobile devices.
Bluetooth is a short-range wireless technology that uses radio waves to enable different electronic devices to communicate with each other. The name comes from the Danish King Harald Bluetooth, who helped to unite warring countries in the 10th century.
A smartphone dual-lens camera allows users to apply different effects to their photos, such as increased depth of field, as well as various angles and effects. The upcoming iPhone 7 [link to iPhone 7 page] is rumoured to be sporting one of these.
GPS stands for ‘Global Positioning System’. This satellite-based global navigation system is the technology behind Google Maps, Google street view and other location-based apps you use on your mobile device.
If you’ve seen this setting on your camera and wondered what it is, HDR stands for ‘high dynamic range’. HDR takes a series of photos, each shot with a different exposure, then combines the best parts of each image. This should result in a better quality photo, so there’s less of a difference between what you’re seeing and what your phone can capture.
International roaming is a feature that allows you to use the mobile networks in other countries. Check your mobile plan for details about which countries you can roam in and how much it will cost you to do so.
An advanced mobile operating system manufactured by Apple Corporation, iOS is the engine that runs all of Apple’s handheld devices, including the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad.
Mbps stands for ‘megabits per second’ and is a term used to measure the speed of your mobile network connection. The higher the Mbps, the faster your connection speeds will be.
A MicroSD card is a tiny memory card that can massively boost the memory capacity of your mobile handset. The SD stands for ‘Secure Digital’, and cards are now available in an impressive 512GB storage capacity.
‘Pay As You Go’ (PAYG) mobile
A PAYG mobile plan is a type of contract-free, month-to-month mobile plan that allows you to purchase different levels of talk, text and data allowances, with the ability to top up your minutes and data whenever you need.
A pixel is a tiny dot of illumination that makes up the images on a display screen. A megapixel is the equivalent of one million pixels and relates to the resolution on your digital camera. In general, the more megapixels your phone’s camera has, the better quality your photos will be.
SIM stands for ‘Subscriber Identity Module’. It’s the small chip from your mobile phone provider that contains data such as your mobile number and account details, and enables you to connect to the network. There are three types of SIM cards available today: full-size SIMs, micro SIMs, and nano SIMs.
A SIM-only plan is a mobile plan that includes a SIM card with a set amount of talk minutes, SMS and data. SIM-only deals do not come with a phone and can be contract, pre-paid or month-to-month.
Siri is a voice-activated ‘intelligent assistant’ that’s now available on certain models of iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch devices. Siri has also been added to the latest update of the Mac Operating System – macOS. Simply speak a command and Siri will carry out the instruction.
USB Type-C port
A USB Type-C port (or USB-C) is a type of charging port that enables fast charging on your phone, tablet or laptop. It is set to replace the USB interfaces, which have been around since the mid-1990s.
VoIP stands for ‘Voice over Internet Protocol’. It works with your 3G/4G service to allow you to make phone calls over Wi-Fi using mobile VoIP software.
Now that you’ve mastered the lingo, let us help you find the right phone and plan for your needs. Compare different plans from our participating mobile provider today.