The government is hoping to completely terminate 2G telecom services by the end of August, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said, adding that none of the nation’s telecoms have indicated they plan to take up Asia-Pacific Telecom’s offer to provide a 2G voice network, after the license expires on June 30.
The nation still has about 1.46 million people using 2G mobile phones, commission spokesperson Wong Po-tsung (翁柏宗) said.
About 940,000 of them are accessing 2G services with 3G SIM cards installed on their handsets, while about 390,000 are using 4G SIM cards to access 2G services, he said
The remaining 133,000 are using 2G SIM cards on 2G handsets, he said.
Mobile phone users accessing 2G services with 3G or 4G SIM cards would be able to swiftly migrate to new services after the government ends the 2G service, Wong said, adding that the biggest problem lies in the 133,000 remaining 2G users.
The 2G license is to expire on June 30, Wong said.
Although telecoms would be able to offer 2G services using their 4G networks until Aug. 31, Wong said that the commission hopes that the service will be removed from the market without any setbacks.
Wong added that the commission had asked Chunghwa Telecom, Far Eastone Telecommunications and Taiwan Mobile if they intended to have a shared voice communication service network to serve their remaining 2G users, which Asia Pacific-Telecom has volunteered to provide.
According to Wong, none of them had indicated that they had intentions to do so.
The three major telecom companies are using the 32.45 megahertz frequency band to provide 2G services.
After the discontinuation of 2G, that frequency is to be used to enhance the speed of 4G services, Wong said, adding that telecoms estimated that they could save more than 300 million kilowatt-hours of electricity per year if they shut down the 2G network.