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Windows XP Unwired by Wei-Meng Lee

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Compression

Although GPRS and CDMA2000 can reach speeds faster than a regular dial-up Internet connection, they can’t compete with a good solid Wi-Fi connection. But, they can get slightly closer by putting a little intelligence between your notebook and the Internet.

Verizon and AT&T Wireless support a compressing proxy server . This involves two pieces of middleware that sit between your web browser and the Internet, which are described next.

The compressing proxy server

This is a proxy server that sits in your cellular carrier’s “cloud” (somewhere on their network). When a request comes in for a web document, such as an HTML file, graphic, or text file, this proxy server downloads the content, compresses it, and sends it back to whoever requested it (you).

The client

Because your web browser doesn’t understand the compression scheme used by the proxy server up in the cloud, there is a second piece of software that runs on your computer. This is often referred to as a client and is generally invisible to you. This client is actually a mini proxy server that accepts requests from your web browser, forwards them to the compressing server in the cloud, and decompresses the responses before sending them back to your browser.

The upshot of this arrangement is that you can expect load times to be significantly reduced in many circumstances. For example, under poor network connections (with the signal meter reading one out of five bars), Verizon’s compressing proxy was able to transfer an ...

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