Cordless phone glossary

Teach yourself the ins and outs of cordless phones

A cordless phone. (Image credit: Philips)

A cordless phone. (Image credit: Philips)

If you're buying a cordless phone, it can't hurt to know what it does. We've compiled a glossary of the most important cordless phone terms and features.

2.4GHz: A digital frequency used for cordless phones.

5.8GHz: A digital frequency used for cordless phones.

900MHz: An analogue frequency used for cordless phones.

Caller ID: Caller ID is a service that transmits the caller's telephone number to your cordless phone while it is ringing.

DECT: Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications. DECT is a standard for digital cordless phones.

Digital signal encryption: This encryption is used in digital cordless phones and it secures your conversations and over-the-phone credit card transactions from any eavesdropping by all but the most high-tech scanners (which are only used by the military and government).

DSS: Digital Spread Spectrum. DSS phones randomly change frequencies during a telephone conversation. Any hint of interference will result in a DSS cordless phone changing to a new frequency.

Nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries: These batteries don’t contain toxic cadmium, and are therefore safer to dispose of at the end of their life than older-style NiCads.

Pager button: A button that is usually located on the base station or charging dock. Pressing it sounds an alarm on the phone.

Range: The range of a cordless phone is the maximum distance the phone can be used away from its base station.

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