Network Sunsets and the IoT: What’s Happening and What You Must Do

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By Jamie Moss | 4Q 2018 | IN-5220


2G or 3G First?


Any historian will confirm that process does not mean progress. Simply because a technology is older does not mean that it will be decommissioned first. In a growing number of markets and service providers, it has been realized that 3G will outlive its usefulness before 2G does. We are currently seeing 3G networks being earmarked for closure before 2G across Europe—by Vodafone in the Netherlands, Telenor in Norway, and the Tele2/Telia joint venture Sunab in Sweden, as well as a possible closure by T-Mobile in the United States. The 3G-first phenomenon is not limited to “developed” markets nor to those companies (such as India’s Bharti Airtel) that were the first to deploy 3G.

The most often-stated reason for delaying the shutdown of 2G, or for the closing of 3G before 2G, is the continuing need to support and grow Machine-to-Machine (M2M) services. This fact has been acknowledged for years. While the commitment was once thought to be an Achilles’ heel for carriers, the transition of long-term M2M contracts to new network technologies can be carefully …

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