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2G Networks are Switching Off

Optus completed the shut down of its 2G network on 1 August 2017. Telstra also switched off its 2G network at the end of 2016 and Vodafone's 2G network will turn off at the end of March 2018. 

Remaining 2G customers will need to either upgrade their SIM or handset to continue to receive service. Contact your service provider to find out what your options are.

While some customers may be happy to upgrade to smartphone, others may prefer to stick with a more straightforward phone just for text and voice. Service providers have a wide range of handsets available and can help affected customers decide what would suit them best. 

If you do decide to upgrade to a smartphone - make sure you do your research first to work out what phone and plan will best suit your needs. MobileTips has tips about how to choose the best plan for you before you buy a mobile.

Information for Vodafone 2G customers:

Vodafone has said that its 2G network will shut down on 31 March 2018 and has advised customer that they won't be able to make or receive calls (including emergency calls), texts or use data on the 2G network once the network is switched off.

Vodafone customers have until the end of March 2018 to upgrade to a 3G or 4G device.

If you always see an "E", "Edge" or "GPRS" symbol in the top right corner of your phone's screen you are probably using a 2G SIM in a 3G/4G device. If you can't see any symbol, you are probably using a 2G device.

Vodafone advise that upgrading is easy and they have plenty of compatible devices and plans available. 

Vodafone is also hosting a series of workshops for Seniors to assist them with the switch to a 3G/4G device with information on:

  • Setting up the basics such as font size, wallpaper, and voicemail
  • Ensuring you have all the tools you need to keep in touch with friends and family who live overseas
  • How to manage your mobile usage
  • How to back up your phone
  • Security tips and tricks.

You can find out more about the workshops and how to upgrade your device at Vodafone's website here.

What to do with your old 2G mobiles?

Customers can recycle their old mobile phones through the industry's MobileMuster program.

 

MobileMuster is a free mobile phone recycling program that accepts all brands and types of mobile phones, plus their batteries, chargers and accessories. There are over are over 3,500 drop-off points around Australia for customers to recycle including all of the major phone retailers, alongside a free post back recycling satchel available from any Australia Post. For more information on how to recycle visit mobilemuster.com.au

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How will 5G improve network performance

While the technical standards for 5G are still being developed, experts agree that 5G will offer: Latency of less than 1ms; Ability to deliver speeds of up to 10 Gbps and beyond; Energy efficiency in running 1000s of devices; and Improved network capacity by enabling millions of low bandwidth devices to connect simultaneously. Where 4G focussed on providing improved speed and capacity for individual mobile phone users, 5G will enable more industrial applications, and could be a major technological driver in industrial digitalisation. For more information about 5G read our latest report from Deloitte Access Economics. Download the complete report.

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Flexibility in Network Deployment Regulations

The Department of Communications and the Arts has just completed its public consultation on a suite of amendments to the regulatory framework governing carriers’ deployment of mobile network infrastructure. AMTA joined Communications Alliance in welcoming the opportunity to provide comment on the DoCA consultation paper.

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Melbourne Seminar on 5G and EMF

As part of the process the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) and the Mobile Wireless Forum (MWF) delivered a seminar in Melbourne last week to discuss the latest on the international EMF (Electromagnetic fields) exposure and compliance testing standards for 5G.

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ARPANSA's latest literature review reports on new Australian study which finds no increase in brain cancer with mobile phone use

In The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA's) regular EMR literature survey for May 2016, ARPANSA report on the recent Australian study by Professor Simon Chapman which asks the question "Has the incidence of brain cancer risen in Australia since the introduction of mobile phones 29 years ago?".  The paper pubslished in cancer epidermology compared mobile phone ownership with the incidence of brain cancer in Australia.  In the study, brain cancer incidence rates from 1982 to 2012 are compared with the number of mobile phone accounts in the Australian population from 1987 to 2012. The study found that although mobile phone use increased from 0% to 94% during the 30 year period brain cancer incidence rates were stable.  This finding is consitent with previous studies in the US, UK. New Zealand and Nordic countries. See ARPANSA's commentary here: Full paper may be found here: