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1337Delta764
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AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:45 pm

According to this article:
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/att...down-2g-network-by-2017-2012-08-03

AT&T will be shutting down its 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE network in 2017. This seems like a wise move for AT&T, as it needs to reallocate its spectrum for faster 3G and 4G networks, considering today's data usage. In 2008, AT&T shut down its 1G analog AMPS and its (older) 2G TDMA/D-AMPS networks.

I wonder though, before AT&T shut down its AMPS and TDMA networks, AT&T was adding a surcharge to users still using an AMPS or TDMA phone. I wonder if AT&T will soon do the same for those using 2G-only (GSM/GPRS/EDGE) devices.
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fridgmus
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Fri Aug 03, 2012 11:08 pm

Hmm, might be a problem for me in the future!

I have a super rugged Sonim phone that I just love and AT&T is the only carrier that was able to activate it. And it only operates on the 2G GSM network. So it looks like I have about four years. Who knows what rugged phones will be available then! I'm trying my best NOT to get a smart phone, but as with everything else, I'm sure I'll have to get one sometime in the future. I'm pretty hard on phones, I drop them, get them wet etc. And this Sonim doesn't miss a beat! Expensive, but worth it.

It will interesting to see if they develop a TRULY rugged smart phone!

I had no idea about this, so Thanks Very Much, Delta!   

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DocLightning
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 12:49 am

Quoting fridgmus (Reply 1):
I have a super rugged Sonim phone that I just love and AT&T is the only carrier that was able to activate it. And it only operates on the 2G GSM network. So it looks like I have about four years. Who knows what rugged phones will be available then! I'm trying my best NOT to get a smart phone, but as with everything else, I'm sure I'll have to get one sometime in the future. I'm pretty hard on phones, I drop them, get them wet etc. And this Sonim doesn't miss a beat! Expensive, but worth it.

Rather than designing rugged phones, per se, there are rugged cases that you can buy for your phone. OTTER BOX is one such brand; you can practically drive over the phone without breaking it. Other cases are waterproof.

Well, it's hard to send a telegraph these days, so I guess we shouldn't be surprised that 2G is getting shut down eventually. I'm surprised it's five years off yet.
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EricR
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 3:24 am

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 2):
we shouldn't be surprised that 2G is getting shut down eventually. I'm surprised it's five years off yet.


Believe it or not, the process takes a lot of time.

First of all, you have to make sure all the sites are converted to 3G/LTE technology. For the most part, each site can be converted quickly with very little issues. However, if expansion of the site is required, the zoning process can take time.

Once the site is converted, there is a testing period to make sure the coverage for the new technology is equal to or better than the existing 2G coverage.

After the sites are converted, then starts the long process of migrating customers with old 2G handsets to new 3G or LTE devices. The company hopes most customers convert to newer handsets on their own. For many of the existing 2G customers, this will naturally place as old handsets breakdown from daily usage of the device.

Approximately one year prior to the shut down of the 2G network, the company will proactively contact the remaining 2G customers on a regular basis until most are on a 3G/LTE device.

There is always a small segment of the customer base that is caught off guard when the old technology gets turned off. This issue happened when the TDMA network was shut down several years ago.
 
fridgmus
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 7:19 am

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 2):
Rather than designing rugged phones, per se, there are rugged cases that you can buy for your phone. OTTER BOX is one such brand; you can practically drive over the phone without breaking it. Other cases are waterproof.

Hey Doc,

When I was in Kuwait, I had an iPhone 4 and I got an Otter Box case which fit perfectly and protected it well. But this Sonim 5300 is a damn "tank" of a phone! I'll enjoy it for as long as I can until I have to get a smart phone. The only reasons I had an iPhone in Kuwait was that they were decently priced and I could listen to my iTunes on it. That and text messaging with my co-workers. Didn't use it for anything else and well, it's a little hard for me to learn to use all the apps that everyone said I "must" have (I'm a little dyslexic). BTW, the iPhones in Kuwait were all on the GSM network and I think, but I'm not sure, they were all sold "unlocked". Don't remember about that.
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srbmod
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 2:38 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 2):
Well, it's hard to send a telegraph these days, so I guess we shouldn't be surprised that 2G is getting shut down eventually. I'm surprised it's five years off yet.

That just means that eventually areas in which the coverage is currently the newer 2G standards will be upgraded to 3G/4G standards. If you have a device that is 2G/3G and will be still be using it when such a switchover occurs, it just means you will get 3G service only.



Quoting EricR (Reply 3):
After the sites are converted, then starts the long process of migrating customers with old 2G handsets to new 3G or LTE devices. The company hopes most customers convert to newer handsets on their own. For many of the existing 2G customers, this will naturally place as old handsets breakdown from daily usage of the device.

Precisely. While there will be those who never saw any reason to upgrade their devices because they still worked and the newer devices didn't interest them, most folks change their phones every few years (or sooner if they change cell providers at the end of a contract).

Now the question is, does this result in other carriers like T-Mobile who also use the GSM/GPRS/EDGE standards announcing a phase out date for 2G as well? Could there be a consensus decision amongst GSM/GPRS/EDGE carrier to phase the standard out in the US at the same time?

2017 is a long way off and considering how fast technology advances, 3G and even 4G could be old tech by then.
 
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Revelation
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 3:32 pm

Quoting EricR (Reply 3):
First of all, you have to make sure all the sites are converted to 3G/LTE technology. For the most part, each site can be converted quickly with very little issues. However, if expansion of the site is required, the zoning process can take time.

It sounds like you are saying they have to maintain the 2G while adding 3G/4G so it'd seem that it'd take extra room, no?

In my part of the US, the Verizon/Comcast spectrum deal is a watershed event. In effect, Verizon is giving Comcast the wired broadband and cable market in exchanged for wireless spectrum, much to the detriment of consumers.
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EricR
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:00 pm

Quoting srbmod (Reply 5):
Now the question is, does this result in other carriers like T-Mobile who also use the GSM/GPRS/EDGE standards announcing a phase out date for 2G as well? Could there be a consensus decision amongst GSM/GPRS/EDGE carrier to phase the standard out in the US at the same time?


Interesting question especially since AT&T and T-Mobile are roaming partners due to their similar GSM technologies. T-Mobile would either need to follow suit or risk that some of their 2G users may not have roaming coverage in 5 years when AT&T shuts off their 2G network.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 6):
It sounds like you are saying they have to maintain the 2G while adding 3G/4G so it'd seem that it'd take extra room, no?


No. It will not take up any more room. It is an allocation process. A wireless carrier has X amount of spectrum in each market. The amount of spectrum will not change during this process (assuming no additional spectrum is purchased or swapped). What will change is the allocation of that spectrum. Today Y% is on 2G. In 5 years, 0% of the spectrum will be on 2G.
 
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RE: AT&T To Shut Down 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE Network In 2017

Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:09 pm

Quoting EricR (Reply 7):
No. It will not take up any more room. It is an allocation process. A wireless carrier has X amount of spectrum in each market. The amount of spectrum will not change during this process (assuming no additional spectrum is purchased or swapped). What will change is the allocation of that spectrum. Today Y% is on 2G. In 5 years, 0% of the spectrum will be on 2G.

Thanks for the answer, but I was thinking about the need for more room physically for extra equipment, antennas, etc.
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