By 2022, many major US wireless carriers will shut down their old 3G networks as they migrate to 4G LTE, or Long-Term Evolution networks. This progression in the mobile telecommunications space means some of your smartphones and tablets will soon be sunsetted. It can get confusing from network to network, so we thought we would share some information to help clarify the process.
What is 3G Sunsetting?
Simply put, 3G sunsetting means that a mobile carrier will shut down the cellular infrastructure that is used to operate 3G (UMTS, HSPA, EVDO) technology communication devices so they can move to 4G LTE.
Why are Networks Shutting Down 3G?
As new devices require more speed, networks shut down legacy networks like 3G, and 2G before it, so they can use the bandwidth to support 4G LTE and 5G. These next-generation networks are faster, more efficient, and more cost-effective because they allow more devices to share the bandwidth.
When Will the 3G Sunset Take Place?
That all depends on the carrier—but just know it’s coming. Most major networks have planned a complete 3G shutdown by the end of 2022-23, while others have not yet set specific dates.
Should I Wait Until the Last Minute?
The simple answer is no. Even before the 3G sunsetting period began, some carriers began repurposing their network bandwidth, which means your devices could lose connectivity ahead of the shutdown.
The progression from 3G and 4G is a constantly evolving process. But know that the current smartphone or tablet devices you use today may not work with the next generation of mobile telecommunications networks.
For fleet managers, you know there is more than just upgrading your devices to consider when switching to 4G. There is the financial and time investment of upgrading your vehicle mounting hardware to fit the new tables or rugged smartphones.
Get in Touch
Now is the time to find the right technology product solutions for your fleets ahead of the shutdown. Contact us today to see how GPSLockbox can help with your industrial-strength cases and docking vehicle mount needs.