2G and 3G Network Shutdowns Are Coming

With cellular network technology shifting to 4G LTE, 2G and 3G network shutdowns are fast approaching. For fleet managers with telematics devices, there is no alternative but to swap out the hardware to 4G LTE. And already 5G, expected to be about 20 times faster than 4G, is coming – but 5G is still about 10 years away for telematics use. 5G requires about 4 transmitters per mile.

The downside to improving communications technology for Fleet Managers, is that it comes at a cost. Hardware must be upgraded. There’s no way around it. Here at Btracking we’re doing our best to inform our customers, provide the best options, and help customers manage the device swap-out as smoothly as possible.

Here’s a brief summary of upcoming 2G and 3G network shutdowns that will affect Btracking customers. The shutdown date provided by the carrier is the last date service is guaranteed. In some rural areas it may take a year or more to retire service, but on the other hand, carriers might start reducing coverage sooner in rural areas.

USA

  • T-Mobile’s 2G GSM network shutdown is planned for the end of 2020. T-Mobile 2G coverage in certain rural areas is already being reduced. Btracking is contacting its customers with devices on these networks now. No shutdown of the 3G network has been announced.
  • Verizon 2G and 3G remain active through 2022 for select telematics providers including Btracking.
  • All AT&T Btracking customers are already on 4G LTE. The 2G network is off and 3G shuts down at the end of 2020.

Canada

  • Rogers shuts down 2G at the end of 2020. Btracking is contacting customers on these networks now. Bell and Telus 2G networks are already off.
  • Rogers, Bell and Telus have not announced 3G shutdowns, but the end of 2025 is anticipated.

Global

  • Vodafone 2G and 3G will be supported through at least 2025.

Btracking stands ready to assist current and new customers in updating to the latest 4G LTE hardware. Both standard CAT 1 (think phones) and newer, lower-powered CAT M hardware are available. The newer CAT M modems, made for slower bandwidth applications, may be suitable for certain telematics applications.

Btracking recommends fleet managers who need to replace units to contact us at info@btracking.com to jointly develop an upgrade plan. Btracking has one of the most intuitive, full featured platforms available with details at Btracking.com. We’ll help you:

  • Develop a timeline for replacing obsolete units.
  • Provide details about our products, and especially new devices and services that will benefit your business.
  • Help find the best new hardware at the best price.
  • Sequence hardware replacements over a timeframe that works for your business.
  • Work with installers that work within your fleet maintenance schedules. You don’t need to replace everything at once.