By now, you’ve likely heard of how the 3G Sunset is rocking the security industry, but what exactly is the 3G Sunset and what impact will it have? The answer: a massive change in mobile communication networks that’s going to affect millions of security systems nationwide. What’s more is that it’s already begun, meaning you may need to take action to ensure your business security system will be able to communicate with its monitoring station once the shutdown is complete. Here’s what you need to know:
What is the 3G Sunset and Why is it happening?
As with any adaptation to technological evolution, the 3G sunset is the shutdown of the 3G mobile network that will make room for faster and more efficient wireless cellular networks such as 4G and 5G. As new “generations” of technology are implemented, old ones are retired. Major national wireless carriers, including Verizon and AT&T, have begun to deploy next-generation technologies to accommodate growing demands for greater bandwidth, speed, and efficiency. In order to make way, national wireless carriers will shut down their existing 3G networks by replacing towers and equipment to accommodate 4G and 5G.
When is this going to happen?
The precise timing of the 3G shutdown is an evolving and somewhat uncertain. As was the case with the 2G sunset, a shutdown date isn’t so definitive because cellular network providers must strategically shut down specific towards in specific regions of the nation. Verizon and AT&T are anticipated to continue operating 3G until at least 2021 and perhaps beyond. While some regions will continue to offer 3G coverage, some areas have already lost 3G coverage in order to adopt 4G and even 5G networks.
How will this impact my security system?
Approximately 10 million U.S. commercial and residential security systems continue to rely on 3G communicators to transmit fire and burglar alarm signals to a monitoring station. As the 3G sunset gradually comes to a close, alarms may trigger locally, but central stations will not be alerted, leaving businesses and homes unprotected because of 3G communicators that are incompatible with 4G and 5G networks. Anyone using a 3G communicator will have to update their technology to make sure their systems can still send signals to their monitoring stations.
How will SSP support my business through this transition?
SSP has been monitoring the 3G Sunset for years, and we’re therefore dedicated to assisting you through this transition. Fortunately, some security systems are able to be retrofitted with 4G communicators. However, a complete system evaluation by a trained specialist is always recommended to determine the extent of your upgrade and installation needs.