If you’re a smartphone user, you’ve probably noticed your carrier using 4G/LTE and even 5G systems. These cell services make calling more reliable and the transfer of data faster while on the go.

But the downside is that the major carriers are all discontinuing 3G service at various points of 2022, which will affect services that many seniors rely on.

Far Rockaway Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing has a list of four things that you will need to check on in advance of the 3G shutdown.

  1. Older Cell Phones

Pay-as-you-go and discount cell phone providers like Cricket, Jitterbug, and others use the cell towers of major carriers like AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile (Sprint), and many of those older phones utilize the 3G network. It’s estimated that there are 1 to 3 million of these phones out there and in use, so check with your carrier to see if the device you or a loved one has is affected, and you will have to upgrade that device to a 4G/LTE or 5G version.

  1. Home Alarm Systems

In 2019, there were around 80 million 3G devices being used in North America, so there’s a lot more than phones out there. Home security companies rely on wireless technology to monitor your home and report alarm triggers. Companies should be notifying customers who are affected and offer upgraded components, but you should call your security company if you’re unsure.

  1. Old Tablets and Kindles

Early iPads, Chromebooks, and first-generation Kindle devices use 3G if they are enabled with wireless service. People will either have to upgrade these devices or cancel their wireless plan and just use them over Wi-Fi.

  1. Medical Monitoring Devices

If you or a loved one has a medical monitoring device (necklace, bracelet, or other wearables), the system that connects these devices to dispatchers and emergency personnel is typically on a 3G network, much like home alarm systems. Chances are that these companies will reach out to those affected, but it’s best to call and make sure so coverage isn’t interrupted.


To learn more about Far Rockaway Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing and all of the services they offer, visit http://far-rockaway-center.facilities.centershealthcare.org.