AT&T Begins Refarming 2G Network Into 3G In New York


In an effort to help alleviate some strain on their 3G/4G networks, AT&T has announced plans today to begin refarming their old 2G 1900MHz spectrum in the Big Apple, upgrading it to the wonderful world of 3G. Rather than just pull the rug out from underneath New Yorkers still using 2G-only capable devices, AT&T will make sure to offer them free upgrades to 3G capable devices. It’s 2012, people. Get with the program. No word on how long the whole process will take, but you can find AT&T’s full press release below.

AT&T Continues To Focus On New York City Wireless Experience

Re-allocation of Network Resources Helps Improve Customers’ Wireless Experience

NEW YORK, May 23, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — AT&T* has set the pace, delivering the mobile Internet to more smartphone customers than any other U.S. provider. In addition to voice calling, AT&T customers are connecting to the mobile Internet more every day, using smartphones, tablets and other networked devices to access apps and the web to manage their personal and business affairs.

To meet that exploding demand and enhance call quality and data speed, AT&T is re-allocating some radio frequency, or bandwidth, from its 2G to its more advanced 3G and 4G networks in New York City.

“Dedicating more capacity to our advanced wireless networks will help more of our customers in New York City have a better experience overall,” said Tom DeVito, vice president and general manager for AT&T in New York and New Jersey. “By re-allocating network resources from our 2G network to support our newer, advanced networks, we’re moving capacity to support the voice and mobile internet services our customers want.”

This will help customers have an even better overall experience with both voice and the mobile Internet. AT&T has been proactively reaching out to affected customers who use 2G devices in New York City to provide them with more details and a variety of options for upgrading their devices, including discounts on new ones while keeping their mobile numbers. AT&T is encouraging customers to make the move to a better overall experience.

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. Now if T-Mobile would do the same thing starting in Ohio, I’d be a happy camper.

      1. Why dont you write an article better explaining what refarming means, especially related to how tmo refarming would allow the use of international phones on their 3g/4g

          1. Just recently found out about this site. Good article. If tmo is going to refarm 1900, what happens to the 1700 and 2100 bands that were BOTH previously required if I’m not mistaken?

          2. What about 700 aws? isn’t tmo currently using that for hspa+, with plans on refarming for LTE? Doesn’t att use a different band for LTE?

  2. Wow. People still use 2G devices? I even think my grandma’s 4 year old flip phone is 3G.

    1. was going to say the same thing. 2G?!

    2. In my area att mostly has 2g coverage. The town i live in has 3g now though

    3. I only upgraded from a 2G phone for the Galaxy Nexus. My parents, and countless other 50 and over adults that don’t have a serious interest/need for the latest technology, are still using phones without 3G technology

  3. AT&T needs to do this in the Boston suburbs. Very slow Data. It ruins the new phone experience. Why bother having a great phone when you are running on 2g? Come on AT&T.

  4. Seems sprint has been turning off their iden network which I would assume may just be a 2g network unless I am mistaken. Do not know if they are re-purposing it to 3g/4g or not.

    1. Sprint is upgrading their 3G network with better speeds (same spectrum), and iDEN is used for push-to-talk, but will soon be LTE if I remember correctly…

      1. iDEN (800 MHz) will be used to add CDMA 1x Advanced, meaning further reach and higher subscriber capacity.

        Sprint plans 800 MHz LTE to follow the new 1900 MHz LTE as well, but is awaiting FCC approval on that.

        The new Network Vision towers feature programmable radios and what amounts to a plug and play chassis, so the additional radio expansion won’t require a new round of tower building or replacements.

        Part of the 3G improvement will come from tower upgrades but much of it is coming from a comprehensive upgrade of their backhaul (data centers and networking).

        1. Hmm there is a sprint tower just to the south of me yet my boost mobile service stinks even when I tried out many different sprint prls. Not many towers that are that close to me they are all farther south according to opensignalmaps. yet iden works a lot better in this area then CDMA does.

  5. My AOKP-equipped Galaxy Nexus switches to 2G mode when the screen is asleep to save battery. Sounds like those days may be over before long :-(

  6. I wish Sprint would give free upgrades when they switch to LTE to people with WiMax phones. I respect AT&T for offering their 2G customers free 3G upgrades.

    1. They aren’t doing that because the Wimax service isn’t being shut down, in fact they just starting offering Wimax to prepaid and mnvo’s
      Your WiMax phone will still work, these 2G customer’s phones won’t.
      It’s a different circumstance.

  7. Love the picture!! Didn’t see it at first but there a signal bars everywhere!! Back of the truck, trees, vegetable,…

  8. So does this mean, where there “was” 2G, there will be 3G? Lyk in areas that were 2G only, it will be 3G now? Am I understanding that correctly? I sure hope I am. =.D

    1. Yes, good job, u have mastered basic reading comprehension. You get a gold star !!!

  9. They did this in Japan about 3 years ago. I had 2 prepaid Softbank keitai, 1 was old school 2G, and I received a letter saying that I had to upgrade if I wanted to keep my service, and NO FREE UPGRADE, I would have to pay for the new phone if I wanted to keep that number. Japanese were never good a customer service. So in Japan, there is NO 2G service (at least not on Softbank).

  10. Make
    from online

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