Verizon has yet again postponed plans of shutting down its 3G network, after announcing to pull the plugs on the legacy cellular connectivity generation in 2020. “Our 3G network is operational and we don’t have a plan to shut it down at this time. We’ll work with customers to move them to newer technology,” Verizon spokesperson Kevin King was quoted as saying by Light Reading.
To recall, Verizon had originally announced a while back that it will stop 3G operations in 2019, but then extended the deadline to 2020. With yet another extension, it appears that the company is giving 3G one last lease of life. However, Verizon is not alone when it comes to continuing 3G support.
Verizon is not the only operator still carrying 3G
The other two names in the “big three of US telecom” world – AT&T and T-Mobile also offer 3G support at the moment. AT&T has already confirmed that it will phase out its 3G network in February next year. T-Mobile, on the other hand, has not revealed a concrete timeframe around which its 3G services will see the sunset. However, a Twilio support document suggests that t-Mobile will start shutting down its 3G network in January 2021 itself. “We expect the 3G network to begin to be shutdown as early as January 1, 2021,” it says.
Coming back to Verizon, an official support document says that the carrier is no longer activating 3G devices for a new line on its service. After shutting down the service for postpaid customers back in 2018, the company stopped activating 3G devices starting May last year. Verizon’s latest announcement means the company will continue to offer its telecom services across 3G, 4G, and 5G bands, while it aggressively works on its 5G expansion plans.
However, jumping the 5G bandwagon if you’re on Verizon’s network might not be the best idea if you live in the New York area. As per a recent test, it was found that Verizon’s DSS-based Nationwide 5G network was slower compared to Big Red’s own 4G LTE network.