Internet, Networking, & Security Home Networking 93 93 people found this article helpful Definitions and Examples of Wireless Technology A guide to understanding wireless technology by Melanie Pinola Writer Former Lifewire writer Melanie Pinola has 5+ years' experience writing about consumer-oriented technology and is an expert telecommuter. our editorial process Melanie Pinola Updated on April 23, 2020 The Wireless Connection The Wireless Connection Introduction All About Wireless What Does Wireless Really Mean? 802.11 Standards Explained The Range Of A Wireless Network Dual-Band Wireless Networking Explained How Bluetooth Works With Wireless Measure It: Wi-Fi Signal Strength What Is A Wi-Fi Hotspot? The Best Wi-Fi Channels For Your Network Access Your Router As An Administrator 5 Tips for Securing A Wireless Network How Many Devices Can Connect To One Wireless Router? How To Connect At Home How to Name Your Wireless Network How to Change Your Wireless Router's Admin Password Change the Wi-Fi Channel Number to Avoid Interference Build a Wireless Home Network Use Wireless Speakers In Home Theater Connect Your Echo & Alexa To Wi-Fi Connect Google Home to Wi-Fi Wirelessly Connect An iPad To Your TV Use a Free Firewall Program How To Connect On The Go How to Find Free Wi-Fi Locations Get 4G or 3G on Your Laptop Connect To Wi-Fi in Your Car Get Wireless Internet Access in a Hotel Use Your Android As A Wi-Fi Hotspot Set Up Personal Hotspot On Your iPhone Connect Nintendo Switch To Bluetooth Headphones Connect To A Wireless Network With Windows Access Your Computer Remotely How to Troubleshoot Wireless Issues 7 Reasons Wi-Fi Connections Drop Disable Automatic Wireless Connections on Windows How to Hack-proof Your Wireless Router How to Fix OS X Bluetooth Wireless Problems What to Do When Google Home Won't Connect To Wi-Fi How to Hide Your Wireless Network Can't Connect To The Internet? Try This What to Do When There's No Internet Connection The Future of Wireless 5G Changes Everything How 4G And 5G Are Different Why 5G Really Is Faster All About 5G Cell Towers 5G Challenges: Why It Isn't Rolling Out Faster Is 5G The High-Speed Replacement for Cable? When 5G Is Coming to the US The 12 Best 5G Phones Coming in 2019 Yagi Studio / Getty Images Tweet Share Email In the most basic sense, wireless refers to communications sent without wires or cables. More specifically, the term may refer to a broad range of technologies and mediums, from cellular networks to Bluetooth devices to local Wi-Fi networks. Wireless is a broad term that encompasses all sorts of technologies and devices that transmit data over the air rather than over wires, including cellular communications, networking between computers with wireless adapters, and wireless computer accessories. Wireless communications travel over the air via electromagnetic waves. The FCC regulates radio frequency bands in this spectrum, ensuring that they do not get too crowded and that wireless devices and services operate reliably. Examples of Wireless Devices Cordless phones are wireless devices, as are TV remote controls, radios, and GPS systems. Other Examples of wireless devices include phones, tablets, Bluetooth mice and keyboards, wireless routers, and pretty much anything else that doesn't use wires to transmit information. Wireless chargers are another type of wireless device. Although no data is sent through a wireless charger, it does interact with another device (like a phone) without using wires. Wireless Networking and Wi-Fi Networking technologies that connect multiple computers and devices together without wires, such as a wireless local area network (WLAN) also fall under the wireless umbrella. Often, these devices are referred to by the catch-all term "Wi-Fi," which is trademarked by the Wi-Fi Alliance. Wi-Fi covers technologies that incorporate 802.11 standards, such as 802.11g or 802.11ac network cards and wireless routers. You can use Wi-Fi to print wirelessly over a home or office network, connect directly to other computers in your network, and even turn your phone into a portable Wi-Fi hotspot for other devices. Find out more about the differences between cellular wireless data and Wi-Fi. Bluetooth is another wireless technology that you're probably familiar with. If your devices are close enough together and support Bluetooth, they can be connected to transmit data without wires. These devices might include your laptop, phone, printer, mouse, keyboard, hands-free headsets, and some smart devices. The Wireless Industry Wireless on its own is typically used to refer to products and services from the cellular telecommunications industry. CTIA, "the Wireless Association", for example, is comprised of wireless carriers, such as Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint; and cell phones manufacturers like LG and Samsung. Different wireless protocols and phone standards include CDMA, GSM, EV-DO, 3G, 4G, and 5G. The term wireless internet most often refers to cellular data, though the phrase can also mean data accessed via satellite.