AT&T announced this week that, as of January 1, its 2G network is officially dead. Chances are you probably didn’t really notice that change, since most phones on AT&T don’t really fall back on that network anymore. Instead, if your device can’t lock on to 4G LTE, it’ll usually fall back to 3G HSPA.
This, of course, means older devices, even the original iPhone, will no longer be able to connect to AT&T for data services. In fact, since 2007 when the iPhone first launched, AT&T says data usage is up an incredible 250,000 percent, “with video being a significant contributor to this growth,” the carrier explained. That will likely continue as higher-quality video, 4K HDR content, for example, continues to increase in popularity.
Today, our 3G and 4G LTE networks cover 99% of Americans,” said John Donovan, Chief Strategy Officer and Group President of AT&T Technology and Operations “By shutting down our 2G network, this frees up more spectrum for future network technologies, including 5G. In the next few months, we plan to repurpose that spectrum for LTE.”