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There will soon be no 3G left in the US - Verizon is the last of the major operators to start turning off 3G subscribers.
The 3G communications standard was introduced to the United States about 20 years ago and was the starting point for turning smartphones into what we now use - powerful mobile infotainment platforms. Over time, the 3G standard ceased to meet the requirements for speed and capacity of communication channels. Carriers in the US planned to shut down 3G and switch to 4G LTE from 2019, but the circumstances were such that this only happened in 2022.
The last of the major mobile operators in the United States to disconnect customers in 3G networks was the operator Verizon. Work began in December. A few years before that, the operator did his best to disseminate information about the inevitability of such an event. What's more, LTE-enabled phones were also distributed, so customers were alerted with as much coverage as possible. And the problem here is not only in phones. There were many utility devices on the network, from home and fire alarms to medical sensors. It was this economy that was the most difficult to replace.
However, in the US, the process of disconnecting subscribers from 3G networks began in the winter of 2022. AT&T was the first major operator to do this in February. A month later, T-Mobile took over. Not everything was smooth. AT&T has even been accused of disrupting the voting process in Michigan this year. However, the process went on, and by the end of the year in the United States, only Verizon remained to provide communication services in 3G networks from large operators.
Since December, Verizon has started cutting off 3G subscribers. Until February 2023, it will be possible to use communication in this network only for communication with the company's technical support and for calls to the 911 emergency number. operators. Part of the vacated frequency range will be given to new 4G and 5G networks.
A similar process is underway in other countries. In Russia, 3G support in major cities will continue until 2025. Sanctions limit mobile operators in purchasing new foreign-made 4G and 5G base stations, so operators are waiting for the supply of domestic-made base stations, and this takes more time.