Computer Science (Human Computer Interaction) (3 Years) [BSc]

Mobile Systems

Unit code: COMP28512
Credit Rating: 10
Unit level: Level 2
Teaching period(s): Semester 2
Offered by School of Computer Science
Available as a free choice unit?: Y



Additional Requirements

Students who are not from the School of Computer Science must have permission from both Computer Science and their home School to enrol.


Computing is becoming increasingly mobile. This unit will give insights into the issues of mobile systems, covering mobile communications, real-time signals such as speech, video and music, codecs, and maximising battery life.


Now that the mobile telephone has evolved into a powerful computer, the mobile dimension of computing is a vital part of Computer Science. This unit will give insights into many issues of mobile systems, including wireless communication networks, the processing of speech, music and other real-time signals, the control of bit-errors and maximising battery life. The techniques and software which underlie commonplace applications of mobile computing systems, including smart-phones, tablets, laptop computers, MP3 players and GPS satellite navigation, will be addressed.

Teaching and learning methods


10, plus a few lab support lectures


2 hours/week

Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes are detailed on the COMP28512 course unit syllabus page on the School of Computer Science's website for current students.

Employability skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Group/team working
  • Innovation/creativity
  • Leadership
  • Project management
  • Oral communication
  • Problem solving
  • Research
  • Written communication
  • Other

Assessment methods

  • Written exam - 50%
  • Practical skills assessment - 50%


Mobile systems

Commonplace examples of mobile computing systems: - mobile phones; - MP3 players; - laptop computers; - PDAs; - GPS satellite navigation.

Real-time signals

Analogue and digital signals; - time and frequency domain representations; - sampling, aliasing, quantization; - companding; - real-time computation.

Coding, decoding and compression

GSM speech coding; - MP3 music, JPEG image and MPEG video coding & decoding; - error correcting codes; - communications coding schemes.

Mobile communication

Transmitting real-time information over wireless networks; - principles of cellular and ad-hoc networks; - Coding of multimedia signals - to increase the capacity of radio channels; - to minimise the effect of transmission errors.

Maximising battery life

May be addressed at many levels including: - chip design; - signal coding and processing; - medium access control; - transmit power control.

Recommended reading

COMP28512 reading list can be found on the School of Computer Science website for current students.

Feedback methods

Marks and feedback on the three laborartory tasks, the presentation and the report will be communicated via Blackboard.
Feedback on previous examinations is available via the School, and feedback on this year's examination will be published in due course.

Study hours

  • Assessment written exam - 2 hours
  • Lectures - 26 hours
  • Practical classes & workshops - 24 hours
  • Independent study hours - 48 hours

Teaching staff

Barry Cheetham - Unit coordinator

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