Paging systems are operated by commercial carriers, often as a , and they are also operated directly by end users as . Commercial carrier systems tend to cover a larger geographical area than private systems, while private systems tend to cover their limited area more thoroughly and deliver messages faster than commercial systems. In all systems, send messages to , an activity commonly referred to as (). System operators often assign unique phone numbers or email addresses to pagers (and pre-defined groups of pagers), enabling clients to page by telephone call, e-mail, and SMS. Paging systems also support various types of , which sacrifice global addressing and accessibility for a dedicated communications link. Automated monitoring and escalation software clients, often used in hospitals, IT departments, and alarm companies, tend to prefer direct connections because of the increased reliability. Small paging systems, such as those used in restaurant and retail establishments, often integrate a keyboard and paging system into s single box, reducing both cost and complexity.


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