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GPRS

General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) is a Mobile Data Service available to users of Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) and IS-136 mobile phones. GPRS data transfer is typically charged per megabyte of transferred data, while data communication via traditional circuit switching is billed per minute of connection time, independent of whether the user has actually transferred data or has been in an idle state.

GPRS can be used for services such as Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) access, Short Message Service (SMS), Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), and for Internet communication services such as email and World Wide Web access.

GPRS, which supports a wide range of bandwidths, is an efficient use of limited bandwidth and is particularly suited for sending and receiving small bursts of data, such as e-mail and Web browsing, as well as large volumes of data. 2G cellular systems combined with GPRS is often described as "2.5G", that is, a technology between the second (2G) and third (3G) generations of mobile telephony.

It provides moderate speed data transfer, by using unused Time division multiple access (TDMA) channels in for example the GSM system. Originally there was some thought to extend GPRS to cover other standards, but instead those networks are being converted to use the GSM standard, so that GSM is the only kind of network where GPRS is in use