What Is a Circuit-Switched Network?


Quick Answer

A circuit-switched network is any network that uses several network switches to reserve a dedicated communications channel between two network nodes for the duration of a communication session.

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Full Answer

The channel functions as if the nodes were physically connected over a circuit, and no other network traffic can use the switches in that circuit during the call. First designed in 1878, circuit-switched networks are often referred to as connection-oriented networks, ideal for communications that require data to be transmitted in real-time. The telephone system is one example of circuit-switching network; for each call, wire segments are linked together to create an unbroken circuit reserved only for that call.

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