It’s official. 3G is to be switched off between the end of 2023 and the second half of 2024. This significant change has been brought about by the need to make way for faster and more efficient 4G and 5G services.

The major carriers have different switch-off dates scheduled, starting with TPG in December 2023, followed by Telstra in June 2024, then Optus in September 2024, and finally Vodafone in August 2024.

History of 3G in Australia

The 3G (third generation) network was first introduced in Australia in 2003, and in many ways revolutionised the way we communicated.

Apart from faster mobile data speeds and call quality compared to 2G, it introduced us to mobile internet access, allowing us to browse the web, send emails, and stay connected in ways previously unimaginable.

However, like all technology, 3G is now being left behind with the advent of faster and more efficient 4G and 5G networks.

Why is 3G being shut down?

As more devices rely on the 4G and 5G networks, shutting down 3G allows for additional radio spectrum to be repurposed for 4G and 5G, offering faster data speeds, improved network reliability, and lower latency compared to their predecessor.

The shift towards 4G and 5G not only benefits consumers with faster and more reliable connections but also brings enormous potential for businesses and industries. The Internet of Things, for instance, depends on low-latency connections to function seamlessly, and 5G’s ultra-low latency will be a game-changer in realising the full potential of IoT applications.

Upgrade your mobile devices and plans

While the 3G shutdown may bring about many positive changes, it will also pose a challenge for certain segments of the population. Older devices that rely exclusively on 3G connectivity will cease to function once the network is turned off. If this is you, then start planning to upgrade your phones or other connected devices to ones that support 4G or 5G. In some instances, it might be upgrading your SIM card only, if your device is 4G or 5G compatible. If your device is older, you’ll need to replace that as well.

Other considerations

Beyond mobile phones, there are several other devices and systems that may feel the impact of the impending 3G network shutdown. These include:

  • Lift lines for elevators
  • Eftpos terminals
  • Security cameras
  • Telemetry and remote monitoring devices
  • Fleet management
  • Industrial automation
  • Backup connectivity

Now is the time to be proactive by taking a complete inventory of your 3G-powered devices and systems within your organisation. A good place to start would be reaching out to your trusted suppliers and manufacturers to understand the necessary steps and timelines for transitioning to alternative network technologies. This proactive and strategic approach will help mitigate potential disruptions and ensure seamless operations of your essential systems.

Stay ahead of the curve
Upgrade your business mobiles + plans today!

The future of business mobile communications is faster, smarter, and more connected. Ensure your business stays ahead of the curve by upgrading your mobiles and mobile plans to take advantage of the 4G and 5G networks. Reach out to us today, and our dedicated team will guide you through the seamless process of upgrading your mobile devices and plans.