2G Sunsets For 4G Traffic

Cell carriers have decidedĀ  2G networks must go to make room for 4G networks

This brings back memories of the analog network sunset back in February 2008. Everyone (almost everyone) was affected. Cellular customers had to ditch their old analog cell phones and move to digital units. Soon after followed the explosion of smart phone technology. No coincidence. The advent of the smart phone could not have occurred without the analog sunset. The analog bandwidth was not even fractionally sufficient to carry the smart phone data. There was a cost in terms of money, comfort level and learning curve. Most of us got over it, and found that life was just better in the digital world.

Alarm systems were affected in a HUGE way. Many alarm systems used analog cellular transmitters to increase security and alarm signal transmission reliability. Security dealers had to explain to customers that their cellular units were in need of an upgrade, or they would stop working at the end of that February in 2008. It got ugly at times, but we got over that too, and found that we could leverage that digital cellular technology to provide our customers with remote control and notification services for their alarm systems and CCTV systems.

Now we are looking at another sunset. As of December 31st, 2016, the 2G digital networks will be shut down to make room for the more capable 4G (LTE) network. This will affect the same people the last sunset affected. Cellular 2G telephone unit users will need to upgrade to 4G units. Alarm system users will need to upgrade their communicators to the 4G standard.

What is driving this sort of activity? Simply put, customer demand. The major carriers would like nothing better than to stop pouring investments into improving the cellular network. But their customers would mutiny and jump ship in droves. Cellular users demand more services delivered to their hand, and alarm system users want more remote control and remote video viewing power.

Alarm owners are getting used to an idea that cellular telephone user came to grips with already; you need to change your cellular technology (and all associated equipment) about every 5 years (6 maximum) to stay on the network.

We were all a bit better prepared for this sunset, we have been through it before and heeded the warnings way in advance. Safe-T-Tech has been installing 4G communicators for over a year now. And that’s a good idea, because there is a really huge problem that is not talked about so much. You see, its not like on the sunset date the 2G network will just stop working. It will stop working completely on that date, but right up to that time it will also be steadily degraded, as carriers take down 2G equipment from cell towers to make room for the 4G equipment. We have seen some outage areas already, and we are still about two years from the sunset.

Call your alarm dealer to find out if this sunset will affect you. The sooner you make the switch, the more secure you will be.

I look forward once again to a better life in this new (newer) digital age.

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