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We’ve all gotten very comfortable using advanced communications technology. In fact, most of us rely on it to keep in touch with loved ones and conduct business on a daily basis. What would we do without all of our devices for calling, texting, emailing, video chatting, and otherwise staying connected and sharing information? In this article, we will explain the difference between Full-Duplex and Half-Duplex.

Of course, different communication mediums are not created equally. For one thing, you might use any number of platforms. For example, many companies use solutions like free-space optics for certain types of communications and data transfer, rather than relying on fiber optic cables.

In addition, your point-to-point wireless or wired communications are either full-duplex or half-duplex. What’s the difference? Which is better? How can you find out what you’re using? Here are a few things you need to know.

What is Point-to-Point?

Before you can understand how different duplex systems work, you need to know how point-to-point communications platforms operate. These systems consist of two devices or points that communicate with one another.

This is as opposed to a simplex form of communication, which is unidirectional, with one point sending and one receiving. An example of simplex is your average remote control. It sends a signal to your television, but your TV doesn’t send a signal back.

In a point-to-point duplex system, however, both devices transmit and receive data. If you use telephones, computers, or even walkie-talkies, you use duplex communications.

What is Half-Duplex?

Although duplex systems involve two devices that can both send and receive communications, they can’t always do so at the same time. A half-duplex system means that a device cannot send and receive information simultaneously. Hence, when a device is transmitting, it cannot receive, and vice versa.

Additionally, walkie-talkies are a good example of this. When you press the button to speak, you can only transmit. Therefore, you can’t receive a transmission until you complete your own transmission and push the release the button. Furthermore, WiFi communications often run at half-duplex systems. From a practical perspective, this means that communications and data transmissions take twice as long.

What is Full-Duplex?

Full-duplex communication systems are those in which transmission and reception can occur simultaneously. Telephones fit this category because you can both speak and hear the person on the other end of the line at the same time.

In conclusion, full-duplex systems are superior to half-duplex because they are able to cut down communication time. That said, if you are using a half-duplex system, you can always add a full-duplex wireless bridge to increase speed. You can also consider upgrading to a full-duplex system.

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