How to Protect Your Devices After a 3G Shutdown

For many, a 3G shutdown can be an issue.  You’ll have to take preemptive actions to avoid an interruption in your service.  A 3G shutdown essentially guarantees an end to 3G connectivity.  However, 4G or 5G devices will not be affected by a 3G shutdown, as 3G shutdowns affect only 3G devices.  After a 3G shutdown, 4G and 5G devices will still work with conventional network SIM cards.  The primary method about confirmation that your phone will work after a shutdown is to ensure that your phone is capable of VoLTE services.  Naturally, “VoLTE” is about “voice over LTE.” It is the foundation upon which to evolve devices into 4G-capable and 5G-capable devices.  Whatever the case, you must check to see if your device and your family’s devices will continue to function and operate correctly.

How Can I Respond to a 3G Shutdown?

Let’s say you’ve evaluated the phones whose efficacy you must guarantee, and some or all of them are 3G devices.  A good phone service can help you upgrade to 4G or 5G devices, whatever budget you happen to maintain.  A good phone service may even be able to offer different types of financing so as not to suffocate you with fee after fee.  Find the right next-gen phone, and get away from 3G devices.  Upon purchasing a 4G-capable phone, you may be able to get a SIM card from a provider.  Work with your provider’s customer service team to transfer from one phone to another phone.

The Importance of SIM Cards

Whatever SIM card you receive, you may have to upgrade it.  If your SIM card was purchased years upon years ago such that the SIM card is old, then your old SIM card may not be compatible with new VoLTE phones with 4G and 5G capabilities.  The thing is, VoLTE is an extremely important requirement for the newest phones on the market, and VoLTE will not be going anywhere after a 3G shutdown.  One of the best service providers might consider sending you completely and pristinely new SIM cards in the mail.  Be sure to keep your eyes peeled whenever you go outside to take a look or two inside your mailbox.  Make sure your provider has the right address on file!


Once your service provider gives you a new SIM card to install in your new device, you’ll need to update whatever account you have with your service provider. This may involve following the steps with regard to setting up an APN network.  Performing this setup will accomplish something quite important.  The important achievement to which I refer is, of course, over-the-air updating.  What is over-the-air updating?  Well, it is singularly the process by which one might connect one’s phone to one’s brand new SIM card.  When you swap your SIM card, remember to endure the aforementioned setup and allow for over-the-air updating.


If a service provider has refused to send you a SIM card in the mail in the aftermath of a 3G shutdown, and you are somehow affected by this egregious negligence, then consider ordering a replacement in some other manner.  Whether you receive a SIM card from your service provider or end up having to buy one, it’s worth it either way.  At worst, you’ll be able to contact your service provider’s customer service team and resolve any issues you may be having with regard to the purchase or activation of your new SIM card.  Contact customer service over the phone, or feel free to email customer service outside of regular hours.

What Do I Do Now That I Have My SIM Card?

If you’ve checked all the boxes, and you’re still experiencing connectivity issues among other types of problems that are hard to solve, then you may have to contact customer service more extensively.  Customer service may ask you to talk to a more technical contact, like an IT expert.


Dealing with a 3G shutdown is not easy.  You will have to buy new devices for you and your family because the old ones will no longer work if there’s no network to connect to.  Thankfully, if you put in the right amount of work, you can resolve this sort of issue quickly.  There is little to no reason for which one shouldn’t immediately act in response to such a fundamental change in the landscape of phone service.  It’s almost impossible to emphasize how important it is to respond quickly and astutely when a 3G network finally fails to work after many years.  This post seeks only to encourage many people to do the right thing when a 3G network collapse hits.  Make the right decision not just for you, but for your family as well.