As the Internet generation is proliferating with the escalation of technology, the speed and connectivity are upgrading too in with the coming time. But we notice the contemporary years of the Internet, it has seen the fluctuations in its age. Say it 1G, 2G, or 3G, all had different experiences. 2G handled phone calls, basic text messaging, and small amounts of data. 3G introduced us to real connectivity, with HTML pages, videos, and music, right there on our devices. But 3G was still slow and required special formatting for web pages and data to be displayed.
Cellular networks are altering and some are diminishing, this is concerning the various businesses, governments, and industries that affect the deployment in devices to deploy the older network. To provide a faster, more responsive network, they must reuse the spectrum with newer and more efficient cellular technology.
Mobile network infrastructure has changed dramatically with every generation like costs have fallen from 2G generation to 3G and further 67% drop will be seen in future.
But in the shutting down of 3G networks, in several places, its older predecessor, 2G was still kept in operation. For example, in Europe, Vodafone was still in work, while other named Verizon & T-Mobile, AT&T is planning to shut down the 3G in 2022
However, the demise of 3G is not just because of 4G, but there are plenty of other economic reasons which contribute to the 3G-comparable data tariffs.
With this all in mind, we would take an overview for global 3G shutdown,
Launch of 3G Technology:
Japan was the first country to adopt 3G, the reason being the 3G spectrum was allocated without much upfront cost which was branded by FOMA with the first commercial launch of the technology on October 1, 2001, by NTT Docomo in Japan.
Global Adoption of 3G:
The telecom sector had a major shift in which they started seeing an increase in demand for data usage than voice services, the auction of all the 71 spectrum blocks across 22 telecom services across the world was held, frequency spectrum was allocated in the US and Europe with a huge investment of around 100 billion dollars. However, things don’t turn around the way it was planned.
Japan was the first company to launch the 3G system, and Nepal was the first in south-east Asia. Eventually, it was adopted by telecom companies across Europe, Asia, America, and Africa.
By 2007, the 190 3G telecom network was working across 40 countries and 154 HSDPA networks were working in 71 countries.
There were several reasons for the plummeting of the 3G from the countries, and especially from the developing countries.
Quality of 3G Service:
Both the speed and connectivity of the data was poor from the launch. The ideal speed of the 3G Internet was 21 megabits per second for the mobile users which means the 10-minute YouTube video would be downloaded in less than a minute. But this all just remained a vivid dream! The research by telecom Ericsson stated that 48 percent of respondents were incapable to differentiate between 2G & 3G speeds, hence there was no benefit in switching to a 3G service.
Investment in the 3G Infrastructure:
Taking the example of developing countries, investments in the 3G doesn’t execute the way it was planned because it paid extremely high prices for the spectrum in the auction. Secondly, it takes over three years to be a fully-fledged 3G network, but as the 3G was launched in 2010, was late over 10 years, when the Internet was ready to be introduced, new technology 4G came into existence.
One reason telecom operators were denying investments in 3G Operator, is because of high prices. For instance, for every rupee they earn, 30 percent goes to the government in form of taxes and levies. And income tax is different fees which include license fee, spectrum utilization prices, different taxes on tools, and other taxes surge at both central and state level of government.
Because of the high spectrum prices, the telecom operators are not willing to make sufficient investments due to the burdened with the debt. For example, in India, the lack of investment in a 3g network was seen where a total of 5.5 lakh cell towers was decided to be enabled but only 1.65 lakh were established.
Impact of 4G on 3G :
The repercussions of 4G have seen globally on the existence of 3G, for instance, in South Korea, China, and Japan, the net 3G subscriber turned down in the launch of 4G. While in India, the amount of money laundered on 4G technology by Reliance Industries was immense. They have invested over $12 billion which is more than the amount spent by all telecom providers put together to acquire 3G spectrum in 2010.
Other Broadband services:
The emergence of Wi-fi hotspots is also expected to be the reason behind the blowing of 3G. As the issue of speed and 3G Internet quality started emerging, businesses, offices, houses, and other sectors, these places started to introduce Wifi broadband for a smooth process. Secondly, as the prices were high for the 3G Internet, people used local Wi-Fi hotspots to access the Internet. Additionally, congestion in networks forces the ecosystem to use other broadband devices such as routers, dongles, femtocells, and Mi-Fis.