APN Settings : What are Access Point Names Settings?
APN Settings or Access Point Names Settings. The wikipedia definition of an APN or Access Point Names is the following:
An Access Point Name (APN) is the name of a gateway between a GPRS (or 3G, etc) mobile network and another computer network, frequently the public Internet
In other words, an Access Point Name is the information store in your mobile phone that tells it how to find the mobile internet server from your mobile phone operator. Without the APN settings your mobile phone will not be able to find the proper route to connect.
The APN settings are then a group of information stored under an APN Profile in your mobile phone needed to route it to the mobile internet provider, this includes a list of parameters such as: Name, APN (the APN Value), Proxy, Port, User Name, Password, Server, MCC, MNC, etc.
As an International norm, every mobile operator in the world has a unique combination of the above mentioned values, this is the reason why when you move t a different mobile operator and your inset the new SIM card you cannot connect to the mobile internet in your phone. This is because the APN Settings are missing and they must be entered to let your phone knows the correct route to the server.
APN Settings Example in Android Phone
APN Settings are usually per operator and not per device, in other words, the same APN Settings that works for Android should work for an iPhone or Blackberry. There might be different settings for different network technology though, for instance, old devices which is only capable to connect through WAP or GPRS, they might have a different set of APN settings, one for 3G for newer devices and finally you can also have 4G and LTE APN settings.
So next time that you cannot use the mobile internet in your mobile phone, it might be as easy as setting up the APN settings, and you can find a lot of useful APN settings information in this site.