Telecommunication carriers are some of the largest companies in the world. In fact, AT&T, which is the leading telecommunications company in the U.S., had a market value of over $171.8 billion in 2020.
In addition to noteworthy mergers and acquisitions, the industry has been focused on 5G cellular service, which delivers faster download speeds for mobile data, low latency, and higher data caps.
However, before we delve in any further, let’s start with some basic definitions:
The term “telecommunications carrier” is a catch-all that covers all entities that provide some form of telecommunications services to consumers, businesses, governments and other telecom providers as their primary business. This may include fixed or mobile communications, and/or voice or data.
A carrier network is the proprietary network infrastructure belonging to a telecommunications service provider such as AT&T, Verizon or Sprint. Telecom carriers are authorized by regulatory agencies to operate telecommunications systems.
Carrier networks are made up of large, complex configurations of hardware, interconnected to provide communications services to people spread over large areas.
Devices served by a carrier network include telephony equipment, CATV (community access television) receivers, satellite television receivers, mobile computing devices, PCs, and certain types of specialized devices, such as medical and surveillance equipment.
In short, carrier networks distribute huge quantities of data across the globe! Today, most of this is done through fiber optics, although portions of some networks still use cable. Even internet service to individual users can take place through …