2G and 3G: the long goodbye
2G has been available in certain parts of the world since the early 1990s, and 3G arrived in the late 1990s. They’re both extremely stable and proven technologies, that have served the world’s mobile consumers extremely well.
But as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. A large number of networks across the world are planning to ‘sunset’ their 2G and 3G services in this decade. Some have already done so.
The dilemma – which technology to choose
If you’re a manufacturer or provider of IoT devices, you know that 2G and 3G have a finite lifespan, and therefore building devices with this connectivity is inherently risky. However, later generations are significantly more expensive to embed.
So here’s the dilemma – do you pay for more expensive components, thereby pushing the price of your devices up, or do you take a risk that 2G and 3G will be around for a few more years to come and reap the savings?
The real risk factor comes through having to choose a single network. Many networks around the globe are yet to confirm when they will sunset 2G and 3G, which puts you in a difficult position. If 2G or 3G still seem like the right option, which network do you choose?
The answer – go network-agnostic
But what if it was possible to be both committed to 2G and 3G, but also be network-agnostic? In other words, capitalise on the cost-effectiveness that 2G and 3G offers, but retain the flexibility to be able to change service providers if one or more networks decides to sunset its service?
At OV, that’s exactly what we offer. Ours is a multi-network platform, that enables you to switch at any time to any of the remaining available 2G or 3G networks in a given country. No more having to worry about when your provider will sunset – OV’s platform means that as long as 2G or 3G is available on at least one network in your chosen territory, your IoT devices in the field will be supported. Our network-independence gives your users the freedom to move between networks whenever it’s needed.
What’s more, OV’s multi-network offers better coverage too, especially for IoT users who are on the move, like lone and remote workers. Different networks have different ‘patches’ where coverage is poor across a territory. With OV, if you’re in an area with poor coverage on one network, your SIM can simply switch to an available network automatically to ensure you have continuity of service.
2G and 3G won’t be available for ever. But with OV, manufacturers and resellers can have the reassurance of knowing that they can embed 2G and 3G technology, and have those devices supported well into the future.
Breaking the deadlock
The IoT market needs confidence if it is to continue to grow and trade smoothly. OV’s technical solution breaks the deadlock that is caused by sunsetting uncertainty. It guarantees continuity of service, and bridges the gap between the ‘now’ and the ‘future’ of Voice IoT.
OV predicts that by 2025, there will be a resolution to the debate around 2G and 3G networks in most territories. By then, fixed dates from major networks will provide certainty on any planned closures and the market will be able to make a measured and confident decision on what technology to invest in. Until then, a partner with multi-network resilience provides the ideal short-term answer, allowing you to stay with 2G or 3G, but ensure your devices will have longevity.
If your business is caught in the 2G/3G network deadlock, OV can help you find a way through. Get in touch today – we’d love to talk.