Starting in late 2020, wireless carriers began to reallocate existing 3G Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) and Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) networks. This is all part of the wireless carriers’ investment in 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks, which offer more robust coverage and data transmission rates.
This shift directly impacts fleets that use onboard technology that relies on CDMA and GSM networks for connectivity. For fleets that use 3G-powered devices, this means degradation of coverage in certain geographical regions, as well as less quality and reliability of connectivity.
This 3G network sunset concerned Midnite Express, a Fargo, North Dakota-based premium truckload fleet and Trimble customer. With a deep focus on high-quality service, responsiveness, and expertise, Midnite did not want unreliable networks from impacting how it serves its customers.
“Our Trimble rep let us know that the 3G network sunset was coming, and we decided to prepare for that, so we’re ready for the 3G network sunset and don’t have to worry about any coverage interruptions for our drivers or customers,” said Mark Wolter, Director of Safety and Maintenance, Midnite Express. “Our goal was to get ahead of the curve and be proactive versus reactive.”
Midnite decided to upgrade their entire fleet to the 4G-capable PeopleNet Mobile Gateway by mid-2019, and put in a standing order for several new units per month for a gradual rollout. By upgrading their onboard equipment ahead of the 3G network sunset, Midnite can ensure that its drivers and devices have access to reliable 4G networks both today and in the years to come.
“It’s very much given us peace of mind to know we are already prepared for the 3G network sunset and our operations will not be affected,” said Wolter.