Verizon delays 3G network shutdown indefinitely

Polycount

Posts: 2,757   +571
Staff member
In context: 5G is on the way and 4G has been the standard for years, but there's still plenty of people out there with older 3G cell phones. While the slower network has been on the chopping block for years, it's survived by the skin of its teeth thanks to repeated stay-of-executions from cell service providers.

3G Networks

Verizon's 3G network was set to shut down by the end of 2020. However, that deadline has passed and the network is still live: Verizon is giving 3G users one more (perhaps final) chance to switch over to newer technology. According to a statement provided to Light Reading, Verizon's 3G network remains "operational," and it does not have any plans to shut it down "at this time."

The company goes on to state that it will work with customers to move them to newer technology, whatever that might mean.

To be clear, this does not mean Verizon will continue operating 3G for several more years. For all we know, the network might only survive for a few more months (that's just a guess, though).

Verizon executives still maintain that they want to close the network off "as soon as possible," Light Reading reports -- all today's news means is that we don't have an updated deadline for when that day will come.

Perhaps Verizon is hoping a little uncertainty might be just the push any remaining 3G holdouts need to snag a newer device, though, of course, it's not that easy for everyone. There are still portions of the US that aren't adequately covered by 4G, much less 5G, leaving consumers with no choice but to continue relying on older tech.

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yeeeeman

Posts: 363   +311
Unless they install some very low frequency 4g networks instead of those 3g ones, shutting it down is not a good idea simply because 3g seems to go further away in terms of signal strength vs 4g, which means that instead of having low but still decent 3g signal you'll now have nothing.
 

ColdSoup

Posts: 112   +239
Unless they install some very low frequency 4g networks instead of those 3g ones, shutting it down is not a good idea simply because 3g seems to go further away in terms of signal strength vs 4g, which means that instead of having low but still decent 3g signal you'll now have nothing.
LTE can already run on the same frequencies as 3G. LTE is superior in nearly every regard including range, throughput, and number of concurrent users. It's likely many towers can have software updates pushed or just have some hardware replaced to become LTE + 5G towers.
 

psycros

Posts: 3,274   +3,601
LTE can already run on the same frequencies as 3G. LTE is superior in nearly every regard including range, throughput, and number of concurrent users. It's likely many towers can have software updates pushed or just have some hardware replaced to become LTE + 5G towers.
The towers aren't the issue - its the equipment that's talking to them, which is still 3G. It still works just fine.
 
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p51d007

Posts: 2,616   +1,908
There are also millions of security systems out there that rely on 3G for monitoring communications.

Its hard to get everyone to transfer over
I was chatting with an AT&T tech about the copper trunk lines...ask him if they had finally given them
up and he said they can't. He said there are still too many "alarm" companies that use the old copper lines.
 
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ZackL04

Posts: 718   +524
I was chatting with an AT&T tech about the copper trunk lines...ask him if they had finally given them
up and he said they can't. He said there are still too many "alarm" companies that use the old copper lines.
Yep, those too