What does Full Duplex Mean?

In telephony and data communications, full duplex is the ability for both ends of a communication to simultaneously send and receive information without degrading the quality or intelligibility of the content. Full duplex devices, therefore, can communicate back and forth simultaneously.

Duplex systems are employed in many communications networks, either to allow for a communication "two-way street" between two connected parties or to provide a "reverse path" for the monitoring and remote adjustment of equipment in the field.

There are a few advantages to full-duplex. Firstly, time is not wasted, since no frames need to be retransmitted, as there are no collisions. Secondly, the full data capacity is available in both directions because the send and receive functions are separated. Thirdly, stations (or nodes) do not have to wait until others complete their transmission, since there is only one transmitter for each twisted pair.