STOW — Police Chief Michael Sallese, Acting Fire Chief John P. Benoit and Dispatch Supervisor John E. Fantasia wish to provide information about the planned 3G cellular network shutdown, in order to prepare residents for possible impacts.
Mobile carriers plan to retire 3G networks, which rely on older technology, beginning in early 2022 in order to allow for more advanced and reliable network services, including 5G. As a result, some older phones and devices will lose call and data functions, including the ability to contact 911.
Residents with family members who use older devices are asked to check in with them and assist them in upgrading their devices, if necessary.
Mobile devices, including those older than an iPhone 6 or Samsung Galaxy S4, may require an upgrade before the elimination of the 3G network. Residents with older phones are urged to contact their mobile carrier or visit their carrier’s website to determine if a new device or software upgrade is necessary.
Mobile providers have indicated they plan to retire 3G services on the following timelines:
Residents are reminded that these are the dates for completion and mobile carriers may begin retiring parts of the network earlier. Residents with mobile carriers not listed may still be affected.
The shutdown may affect other devices as well, including medical devices, tablets, smartwatches, vehicle SOS services, personal emergency alert devices, security systems and more. Residents concerned about a device’s connectivity should contact the monitoring company or service provider to see whether or not the device will be impacted.
For more information about the shutdown, including information about resources to assist eligible consumers with phone upgrades and other internet connectivity costs, please click here.