A Comparative study of Etisalat GSM occurrence variation in the Riverine communities of Akwa Ibom State has been carried out. A global positioning system (GPS) was used to measure the longitude and latitude at the particular location, while an Etisalat phone meter configured from a Nokia 2700 phone was used to measure the strength in percentage (%). The network investigated in this study is Etisalat Network. Since the study covers 6 (six) local government area s in Akwa Ibom State with Okobo local government having an average Etisalat signal of 51.5^, 87.5% for Eket, 35.0% for Onna, 5.0% for Mbo, 32.7% for Esit-Eket and 50.6% for Eastern-Obolo local government areas respectively. There were also locations in each local government areas that had Nil occurrence while others had a poor Etisalat signal strength which needed more signal boosters that the GSM Network providers should take note.
1.1 GENERAL INTRODUCTION
The global system for mobile communication (GSM) network is the most moderate way used by billions of mobile phone users across the world. Though the telephone stations are connected to signals, both signals are parts of the GSM network. From statistics accumulations by an organization as GSM association, 90% of all mobile phones around the world are part of this network (Bose, 1998).
The principal reason of GSM network is for easy access to cellular and satellite platform across the entire national line. Using digital technology, it gives both speech and data channels in its system. At least, these channels operate on the second generation (2G) network, but many use the third generation (3G) network system to offer these services. These enables the exchange of information at high speed data rate via satellite and mobile cellular towards across networks and company lines. The original purpose for the creation of GSM was to address cellular infrastructure in Europe, but it quickly extended to other nations. Many of the accepted and order of operating the GSM network are printed in journals (Deghan, 2000). This enables skilled workers to shape so as to move faster and more efficiently their protocol from one system to another. Though the GSM may operate on different frequencies depending on the system used such as 2G, 3G with each frequency also divided into different channels for short burst of digital information to be sent via messages. GSM network operates in different frequencies in different countries and much has to do with the sheer volume of the mobile phone used in different parts of the world.
In sending information via GSM network, two different forms of code are used 6.5 and 13 kilobits per second respectively commonly known as half rate and full rate channels (Ceo, 2005).
1.2 BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON GSM
GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications, Originally Groupie Special Mobile) is a standard set developed by the European telecommunications standard institute (ETSI), to describe protocols for second generation (2G) digital cellular network used by mobile phones. It became the defacto global standard for mobile communications with over 80% market share. The GSM standard was developed as a replacement for first generation (1G) analog cellular networks and originally described as digital, circuit switched network optimized for full duplex voice telephony. This was expanded overtime to include data communications, first by circuit switched transport, then packet data transport via GPRS (General Packet Radio Services) and EDGE (Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution or EGPRS).
In 1982, work began to develop an European standard for digital cellular voice telephony when the European conference of portal and telecommunications administration (CEPT) created the Groupie Special Mobile committee and later provided a permanent group of technical support personnel based in Paris.
Five years later in 1987, 15 representatives from 13 European countries signed a memorandum of understanding in Copenhagen to develop and deploy a common cellular telephone system across Europe, and European Union rules were passed to make GSM a mandatory standard. The decision to develop a continental standard eventually resulted in a unified, open, standard based netowkr which was larger than that in the United States. In 1989, the Groupie Special Mobile committee was transferred from CEPT to the European telecommunications standard institute (ETSI).
In 1987 Europe produced the very first agreed GSM technical specification. Ministers from the 4 big EU countries commended their political support for GSM with Bonn Minister’s declaration (May) and the GSM Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was tabled for signature in September 1987. The MOU drew in mobile operators from across Europe to pledge to invest in new GSM networks to an ambitious common data. It got up and run fast.
Phase 1 of the GSM specification was published in 1990. The world’s first GSM call was made by the former finnish Prime Minister Harri Hokeri to Kaarina Suonio (Major in City of Tampere).
On 1 July 1991 on a network built by telenokia and Siemens and operated by Radiolinja. The following years in 1992, the first short messaging service (SMS or “text message”) was sent and Vodafone UK and Telecom finland signed the first international roaming agreement.
Work began in 1991 to expand the GSM standard to the 1800mHz frequency band and the first 1800mHz network became operational in the UK by 1993. Also that year, Telecom Australia became the first network operator to deploy a GSM network outside Europe and the first practical hand-held GSM mobile phone became available.
A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF ETISALAT GSM OCCURRENCE VARIATION IN THE RIVERINE COMMUNITIES OF AKWA IBOM STATE