A cell is the coverage area of a single base station. As a mobile phone moves through a network, it accesses services via the base station of whichever cell it is in. The precise shape of a cell depends on the geography of the region; hills and tall buildings can block signals, while different types of soil or depths of water also have some influence. Ignoring these effects, radio waves form an arc radiating out from a transceiver, as shown in Figure 3.2. The signal gets weaker the further it is from the base station, so the cell boundary is the limit where the mobile terminal can no longer send and receive reliably. Unfortunately, the signal doesn't stop conveniently at this limit, resulting in interference for neighboring cells.

The ...

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