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AVM explains DECT

Thanks to this technology you can make cordless telephone calls, use your FRITZ!Fon to listen to music, view pictures, read e-mail, and control your Smart Home devices and media player. But what's behind DECT and how does it work?

What is DECT?

DECT stands for Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications. It is based on a standard for cordless voice and data communications. The majority of our FRITZ!Boxes can function as DECT base stations. This means that cordless telephones like our FRITZ!Fon models can be registered with the FRITZ!Box. Other developments, known as substandards, also play a role for DECT.

What are the substandards?

Since it was introduced in 1993, DECT technology has undergone continuous further development, so that over the years a number of substandards have emerged. These provide for optimizations or innovations in convenience and quality. We list five of the most important substandards here:

GAP (Generic Access Profile)

This is a further development of the DECT standard, and has become the smallest common denominator for joint operation of DECT devices from different manufacturers. For instance, Gigaset DECT telephones can run on the FRITZ!Box, or our FRITZ!Fons on a Speedport.

IAP (ISDN Access Interworking Profile)

This profile is relatively unknown, yet it provides for the high convenience users have come to expect. By means of this specification it is possible to use certain ISDN convenience features like Caller ID display and call waiting with a DECT telephone. Nearly every DECT telephone currently on the market supports IAP.

CAT-iq (Cordless Advanced Technology – internet and quality)

CAT-iq is a standard for DECT telephony that improves voice transmission and increases the interoperability of devices from different manufacturers. With CAT-iq it has become possible to update DECT telephones with new operating software. Since CAT-iq is undergoing further development, new features are constantly being added.

DECT ULE (Ultra-low Energy)

The advantage of this standard is especially energy-efficient consumption, for instance by Smart Home devices. Despite full transmitter power, at 250 mW the amount of electricity required lies in the microampere range, making it especially useful for battery-operated products. The DECT ULE standard is deployed in FRITZ!DECT 200, 210 and 300. For the FRITZ!DECT Repeater 100, this standard is used in devices with FRITZ!OS 6.50 or higher.

HAN FUN (Home Area Network FUNctional protocol)

With FRITZ!OS 6.80 FRITZ! already supports the HAN-FUN standard for devices from all manufacturers, which is a further development of DECT ULE that allows for even more Smart Home scenarios.

Security is guaranteed

According to Germany's Federal Office for Radiation Protection, transmitter power of 250 mW is categorized as minimal. By comparison, the transmitter power of cell phones in mobile communications networks is around four times higher. There is no scientific evidence for health risks due to the use of DECT devices, not even for persons sensitive to radiation.

DECT connections are securely encrypted ex works. With the update to FRITZ!OS 6.50, two new encryption mechanisms were introduced for DECT connections. The first is called "Early Encryption", which describes that the encryption procedure is performed before transmission. The second is "Rekeying", during which new keys are generated during ongoing communication. Only AVM products support this encryption during operation in repeater mode.

The advantages of DECT in overview:

  • High range (up to 40m indoors, up to 300m outdoors)
  • Secure encryption
  • Very energy efficient
  • Easy to expand thanks to manufacturer-independent standards
  • Own frequency range independent of wireless LAN