Glossary definition of Tri Band

Also known as: Triple-band

Tri-Band Phone is a term applied to wireless telephone handsets that are capable of operating on any of the three internationally designated GSM frequency bands, i.e. GSM 900 (900 MHz), GSM 1800 (1800 MHz) and GSM 1900 (1900 MHz).

Most countries outside America use the GSM 900 and GSM 1800 frequency bands, whilst in the USA, Canada and South America the 1900 MHz 'American GSM' (PCS) is used.

A phone incorporating the Tri-Band facility allows it to be used for global roaming, depending on the available networks and the type of service agreement that the subscriber has. Tri-Band phones can usually be set manually to operate on the local network frequency, or alternatively they may be set to automatically detect and switch the frequency band as a subscriber moves from one region to another. Typically, the same Tri-Band phone can be used widely in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia.

Note: a Dual-Band phone usually operates on just the GSM 900 and GSM 1800 frequency bands, but this still allows the phone to be usable in most countries of the world.