Update: A reliable source confirmed to The T-Mo Report that the UMTS (3G) shutdown has been delayed until April of 2022. In addition, the planned registration block that supposedly took place at the end of January mentioned below was delayed as well, though no word on until when.
The original post continues below.
According to a letter sent to business customers and shared on Reddit, T-Mobile will be shutting down their 3G network on October 1st of this year. They will also be shutting down their 2G network at the end of 2022, over a year later.
T-Mobile appears to have sent the letter to business customers who have impacted devices on their accounts back in November. The letter states that an account executive will reach out to affected business customers over the next several months to “discuss transition options”, presumably including promotional offers on new devices.
The letter also states that a “device registration block” was put in place on January 30th to “restrict network access” to new activations of 2G and 3G-only devices.
T-Mobile previously stated internally that the VoLTE device requirement would begin in January of this year, as well as warning business customers of the pending shutdown of the Sprint CDMA network. That shutdown is apparently scheduled for January 2022.
The phasing out of 2G and 3G devices will likely not impact a majority of customers. There are, however, many customers still using older 3G and flip-phone style devices, as well as many IoT devices that rely on the older tech.
T-Mobile says in the letter that the capacity and coverage of the existing 2G and 3G network will “change” between now and the full shutdown, presumably meaning it will progressively get worse over time.
It’s likely T-Mobile will eventually offer transition promos to standard non-business customers as well, though likely much closer to the shutdown date. That being said, if you’re still rocking an original T-Mobile Sidekick now might be a good time to shop for some alternatives.