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Definition: wireless WAN

A wireless wide area network (WWAN). Also called "wireless broadband" or "broadband wireless," wireless WANs use cell towers to transmit a radio signal within a range of several miles to a moving or stationary device. Contrast with "wireless Wi-Fi LANs" (WLANs), which span only a few hundred feet to stationary or very slow-moving devices.

The three major wireless WAN technologies comprise the two traditional cellular systems, GSM and CDMA, and the newer WiMAX. GSM and CDMA use HSPA and EV-DO to deliver 3G data rates. WiMAX delivers faster data service. See wireless broadband, wireless LAN, cellular generations, GSM, CDMA, WiMAX and WAN.