Are You Prepared for 3G Sunsetting?

3G cellular technology has fulfilled its mission. The service started to pop up in limited areas in 2001 and shortly afterward 3G became high demand, allowing carriers to quickly build the service out. After that, there were many upgrades to the service which allowed it to stick around even longer and enable consumers to stay connected to cellular service for multiple purposes.

Individuals started using the service to:

  • Watch TV
  • Make video calls
  • Use Facebook

And, they did this all from their smartphones.

However, the shift towards 5G involves leaving 3G in the past.  Recently, Verizon and AT&T announced their scheduled 3G service sunset dates. Verizon stopped all new 3G service activations on June 30, 2018, and will have their entire 3G network deactivated by the end of 2022. AT&T also stopped allowing new 3G network activations at the end of 2018, but they’ve committed to keeping their 3G services operational until February of 2022. T-Mobile is also deactivating its 3G services in 2022, although they manage multiple networks with different sunset dates since the merging of T-Mobile and Sprint.

What is 3G Sunsetting?

3G sunsetting is where a mobile network carrier turns the cellular infrastructure off that’s needed for operating communication devices using 3G technology. (HSPA, UMTS, EVDO).

As mobile network carriers have shifted more and more to 4G LTE and now 5G, they are turning off their 3G network operations. They’re doing this to allow them to re-use their 3G spectrum holdings to enable them to add on more LTE network capacity and expand their 5G network. For those who are currently relying on 3G connectivity, this could spell out many challenges.

As of mid-2019, there were over 80 million existing 3G devices in the U.S. alone using current networks. Many are loT devices that operate on national carriers’ networks and are serving a wide range of purposes from in-vehicle telematics devices to home security systems to emergency call boxes and more.

All of these devices will need to make the transition to 4G connectivity to continue operating and since the 3G sunset timeline has already begun, this transition execution is critical. However, some 3G spectrum can be used for 4G data, although the same can’t be said for 5G. Luckily, 4G isn’t quite over yet, so it will be some years before 5G is the standard for all networks.

So, what can you do if you’re currently connected to the 3G network?

 Introducing — Peak PTT 4G LTE Technology

With Peak PTT, your investment is future-proofed because it uses long-term evolution network radios and 4G devices, meaning your equipment will continue working for many years to come even if cell networks turn their 3G bands down.

To learn more about Peak PTT products and services, contact us at 855-600-6161.