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Shut off 3G by 2033? How about 2023, asks Vodafone UK
Wednesday, 26 January 2022 01:46

HTTP/2 200 date: Wed, 26 Jan 2022 01:00:06 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/6438f31bce2730fe373dbd89fb9fea6f09ea1dc3/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/557677e2dc49d556394d4a2d146cb0c0f68aef90/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/557677e2dc49d556394d4a2d146cb0c0f68aef90/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Wed, 26 Jan 2022 01:00:06 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy02us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines x-content-type-options: nosniff cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 6d35cd6c2c005ab0-MEL alt-svc: h3=":443"; ma=86400, h3-29=":443"; ma=86400 Shut off 3G by 2033? How about 2023, asks Vodafone UK • The Register

Says it'll be 'asking customers' to make sure own phones support 4G, and to check on friends, family


Vodafone is to begin retirement of its 3G network next year, saying this will free up frequencies to improve 4G and 5G services.

The move follows proposals by the UK government late last year to see 2G and 3G networks phased out by 2033. Other networks have already confirmed plans to start early, with BT phasing out 3G services for EE, Plusnet and BT Mobile subscribers from 2023.

Vodafone said it will begin retiring its 3G network in 2023 as part of a network modernisation programme.

The plan will see 3G coverage gradually phased out and replaced by strengthened 4G and 5G services, which Vodafone said will allow customers across the UK to access more reliable connectivity.

A Vodafone spokesperson told The Register this will be a gradual process that is likely to start with areas where there is the least 3G traffic, which in practice means cities that are already well-served by 4G and 5G coverage.

"We can't confirm exact timeframes for the switch off at this stage as it's dependent on a few factors, but Vodafone would anticipate most (if not all) of its 3G service being retired in 2023," the spokesperson said.

The company claims less than 4 per cent of all the data traffic on Vodafone's entire network is now carried by 3G services, compared with more than 30 per cent in 2016.

However, rural areas are typically less blessed with coverage, and many subscribers there will know that 3G is often the only service available, even if your handset is capable of 4G or 5G. The modernisation programme is an opportunity for the company to address this.

Vodafone said that today's announcement is the start of a campaign to ensure customers are aware of the coming switch-off and can prepare so they, and, for example, their elderly relatives, remain connected during the changes happening next year.

"We start communicating to customers about this today – our goal is for everyone to stay connected, and we'll be doing everything we can to make sure that's the case. During the campaign, we'll be asking customers not just to make sure that their own phone supports 4G and 4G Calling, but also to check in on friends and family," Vodafone UK CEO Ahmed Essam said in a statement.

Vodafone is working with The Good Things Foundation, a charity set up to help people to improve their lives through digital technology to ensure the campaign reaches the most vulnerable consumers.

As well as 4G and 5G services getting a coverage and speed boost from the repurposing of 3G spectrum, Vodafone claims the move will play a key part in its strategy to reach Net Zero by 2027.

Today's 5G networks are more than 10 times as energy efficient as old 3G equipment, according to Voda, with a 3G network estimated to use 110 KWh of energy to transmit a terabyte of data compared with 30 KWh for 4G and 8 KWh for 5G.

This is backed up telecoms providers such as Ericsson and Nokia, which both claim that 5G networks are up to 90 per cent more energy efficient than even 4G networks.

Vodafone's move has garnered approval from others in the industry. Sharad Sharma, veep of Network and B2B Business at NTT Data UK, said the planned 3G network retirement would be a positive move towards more efficient 4G and 5G services.

"More efficient network services are crucial for a more sustainable future, but it's vital that customers with legacy technology are not left behind," he said. ®


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Hardware manufacturers hit hardest by the global semiconductor shortage had less than five days of chips in their inventories last year – and should expect supply chain issues to continue throughout 2022 – the US Department of Commerce said this week.

Demand for semiconductors skyrocketed during the pandemic as folks purchased more PCs, laptops, and tablets to work or learn from home, and cloud giants scaled up their backend systems to cope. Supply, however, couldn't keep up. The median inventory of semiconductor buyers in 2019 was 40 days of supply. By 2021 that figure was down to less than five days for certain key US sectors, the department said in a report, while demand was up 17 per cent.

Production was initially slowed at factories around the world due to shelter-at-home orders as the coronavirus pandemic took hold. Some facilities had to temporarily shut down after they were hit with natural disasters, such as fires and snowstorms. But between Q2 2020 and the end of 2021 fabs were operating at over 90 per cent capacity and still couldn't meet global demand.

Continue readingBaidu's AI predictions for 2022: Autonomous driving! Quantum computing! Space! Human-machine symbiosis! Did a computer program tell them to write this?

Baidu Research's AI-centric "Top 10 Tech Trends in 2022" report has outlined the Middle Kingdom megacorp's predictions for technology over the coming year.

Baidu CTO Haifeng Wang describes AI as a "key driving force of innovation and development," thanks to rapidly evolving core technologies, cross-domain connectivity, and expanding applications.

It's no surprise that the list focuses on AI given Baidu's business domain. The Beijing-based company's search engine captures over 70 per cent of the Chinese market while also developing other products, particularly AI research and cloud computing. The research arm takes a deeper look at its associated technologies. Think Google but Chinese.

Continue readingNvidia reportedly prepares for un-Arm'd fight with rivals: $40bn takeover may be abandoned Softbank, meanwhile, remains 'hopeful' it can offload Brit chip designer

Nvidia is quietly preparing to give up on the purchase of Arm, according to Bloomberg, after repeatedly butting heads with competition regulators amid a wave of opposition from the tech industry.

A report by the newswire states Nvidia privately told its partners it does not expect the Arm transaction to close. The report also claims Arm's current owner SoftBank is pressing ahead with an IPO of Arm.

The $40bn bid Nvidia lodged for Arm in September 2020 has proved controversial: Arm licences its chip designs to multiple clients and some felt that buying the company will give Nvidia the power to stifle competition.

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Google last month announced plans to prevent customer files stored in Google Drive from being shared when the web giant's automated scanning system finds files that violate its abuse prevention rules.

"When [a file is] restricted, you may see a flag next to the filename, you won't be able to share it, and your file will no longer be publicly accessible, even to people who have the link," Google explained at the time.

That system is now up and running, just not very well: Google Drive's scanning system has been finding copyright violations where they do not exist and flagging innocuous files.

Continue reading22-year-old Brit avoids US extradition over SIM-swapping conspiracy after judge deems him to be high suicide risk Accused said to have suffered mental health problems from childhood

A Brit accused of taking part in a $8.5m SIM-swapping conspiracy has escaped extradition to the US after a judge agreed he was at high risk of suicide.

Corey De Rose walked free from Westminster Magistrates' Court after experts said long-standing mental health disorders and a history of self-harm and suicide attempts meant De Rose was likely to kill himself if extradited.

"This was not a case where the [requested person's] mental condition had only arisen after his arrest on the extradition request, as is often the case," observed District Judge Sarah-Jane Griffiths, handing down judgment [PDF] on Monday.

Continue readingDo you know what TikTok is? Then you might make a good magistrate, says Ministry of Justice 82% of volunteers in England and Wales are aged 50 and above

The Ministry of Justice in England and Wales has launched what it sees as the biggest recruitment drive in the magistrate system's 650-year history, to address the backlog in cases partly caused by the pandemic.

A £1m marketing campaign aims to boost numbers by 4,000 or a third of the current workforce. Teachers, bricklayers, stay-at-home mums, and any individuals who can display reason and sound judgment could be considered, according to an MoJ media missive.

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HTTP/2 200 date: Wed, 26 Jan 2022 01:00:06 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/6438f31bce2730fe373dbd89fb9fea6f09ea1dc3/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/557677e2dc49d556394d4a2d146cb0c0f68aef90/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/557677e2dc49d556394d4a2d146cb0c0f68aef90/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Wed, 26 Jan 2022 01:00:06 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy02us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines x-content-type-options: nosniff cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 6d35cd6c2c005ab0-MEL alt-svc: h3=":443"; ma=86400, h3-29=":443"; ma=86400 Shut off 3G by 2033? How about 2023, asks Vodafone UK • The Register

Says it'll be 'asking customers' to make sure own phones support 4G, and to check on friends, family


Vodafone is to begin retirement of its 3G network next year, saying this will free up frequencies to improve 4G and 5G services.

The move follows proposals by the UK government late last year to see 2G and 3G networks phased out by 2033. Other networks have already confirmed plans to start early, with BT phasing out 3G services for EE, Plusnet and BT Mobile subscribers from 2023.

Vodafone said it will begin retiring its 3G network in 2023 as part of a network modernisation programme.

The plan will see 3G coverage gradually phased out and replaced by strengthened 4G and 5G services, which Vodafone said will allow customers across the UK to access more reliable connectivity.

A Vodafone spokesperson told The Register this will be a gradual process that is likely to start with areas where there is the least 3G traffic, which in practice means cities that are already well-served by 4G and 5G coverage.

"We can't confirm exact timeframes for the switch off at this stage as it's dependent on a few factors, but Vodafone would anticipate most (if not all) of its 3G service being retired in 2023," the spokesperson said.

The company claims less than 4 per cent of all the data traffic on Vodafone's entire network is now carried by 3G services, compared with more than 30 per cent in 2016.

However, rural areas are typically less blessed with coverage, and many subscribers there will know that 3G is often the only service available, even if your handset is capable of 4G or 5G. The modernisation programme is an opportunity for the company to address this.

Vodafone said that today's announcement is the start of a campaign to ensure customers are aware of the coming switch-off and can prepare so they, and, for example, their elderly relatives, remain connected during the changes happening next year.

"We start communicating to customers about this today – our goal is for everyone to stay connected, and we'll be doing everything we can to make sure that's the case. During the campaign, we'll be asking customers not just to make sure that their own phone supports 4G and 4G Calling, but also to check in on friends and family," Vodafone UK CEO Ahmed Essam said in a statement.

Vodafone is working with The Good Things Foundation, a charity set up to help people to improve their lives through digital technology to ensure the campaign reaches the most vulnerable consumers.

As well as 4G and 5G services getting a coverage and speed boost from the repurposing of 3G spectrum, Vodafone claims the move will play a key part in its strategy to reach Net Zero by 2027.

Today's 5G networks are more than 10 times as energy efficient as old 3G equipment, according to Voda, with a 3G network estimated to use 110 KWh of energy to transmit a terabyte of data compared with 30 KWh for 4G and 8 KWh for 5G.

This is backed up telecoms providers such as Ericsson and Nokia, which both claim that 5G networks are up to 90 per cent more energy efficient than even 4G networks.

Vodafone's move has garnered approval from others in the industry. Sharad Sharma, veep of Network and B2B Business at NTT Data UK, said the planned 3G network retirement would be a positive move towards more efficient 4G and 5G services.

"More efficient network services are crucial for a more sustainable future, but it's vital that customers with legacy technology are not left behind," he said. ®


Other stories you might like

Hardware manufacturers hit hardest by the global semiconductor shortage had less than five days of chips in their inventories last year – and should expect supply chain issues to continue throughout 2022 – the US Department of Commerce said this week.

Demand for semiconductors skyrocketed during the pandemic as folks purchased more PCs, laptops, and tablets to work or learn from home, and cloud giants scaled up their backend systems to cope. Supply, however, couldn't keep up. The median inventory of semiconductor buyers in 2019 was 40 days of supply. By 2021 that figure was down to less than five days for certain key US sectors, the department said in a report, while demand was up 17 per cent.

Production was initially slowed at factories around the world due to shelter-at-home orders as the coronavirus pandemic took hold. Some facilities had to temporarily shut down after they were hit with natural disasters, such as fires and snowstorms. But between Q2 2020 and the end of 2021 fabs were operating at over 90 per cent capacity and still couldn't meet global demand.

Continue readingBaidu's AI predictions for 2022: Autonomous driving! Quantum computing! Space! Human-machine symbiosis! Did a computer program tell them to write this?

Baidu Research's AI-centric "Top 10 Tech Trends in 2022" report has outlined the Middle Kingdom megacorp's predictions for technology over the coming year.

Baidu CTO Haifeng Wang describes AI as a "key driving force of innovation and development," thanks to rapidly evolving core technologies, cross-domain connectivity, and expanding applications.

It's no surprise that the list focuses on AI given Baidu's business domain. The Beijing-based company's search engine captures over 70 per cent of the Chinese market while also developing other products, particularly AI research and cloud computing. The research arm takes a deeper look at its associated technologies. Think Google but Chinese.

Continue readingNvidia reportedly prepares for un-Arm'd fight with rivals: $40bn takeover may be abandoned Softbank, meanwhile, remains 'hopeful' it can offload Brit chip designer

Nvidia is quietly preparing to give up on the purchase of Arm, according to Bloomberg, after repeatedly butting heads with competition regulators amid a wave of opposition from the tech industry.

A report by the newswire states Nvidia privately told its partners it does not expect the Arm transaction to close. The report also claims Arm's current owner SoftBank is pressing ahead with an IPO of Arm.

The $40bn bid Nvidia lodged for Arm in September 2020 has proved controversial: Arm licences its chip designs to multiple clients and some felt that buying the company will give Nvidia the power to stifle competition.

Continue reading

Google last month announced plans to prevent customer files stored in Google Drive from being shared when the web giant's automated scanning system finds files that violate its abuse prevention rules.

"When [a file is] restricted, you may see a flag next to the filename, you won't be able to share it, and your file will no longer be publicly accessible, even to people who have the link," Google explained at the time.

That system is now up and running, just not very well: Google Drive's scanning system has been finding copyright violations where they do not exist and flagging innocuous files.

Continue reading22-year-old Brit avoids US extradition over SIM-swapping conspiracy after judge deems him to be high suicide risk Accused said to have suffered mental health problems from childhood

A Brit accused of taking part in a $8.5m SIM-swapping conspiracy has escaped extradition to the US after a judge agreed he was at high risk of suicide.

Corey De Rose walked free from Westminster Magistrates' Court after experts said long-standing mental health disorders and a history of self-harm and suicide attempts meant De Rose was likely to kill himself if extradited.

"This was not a case where the [requested person's] mental condition had only arisen after his arrest on the extradition request, as is often the case," observed District Judge Sarah-Jane Griffiths, handing down judgment [PDF] on Monday.

Continue readingDo you know what TikTok is? Then you might make a good magistrate, says Ministry of Justice 82% of volunteers in England and Wales are aged 50 and above

The Ministry of Justice in England and Wales has launched what it sees as the biggest recruitment drive in the magistrate system's 650-year history, to address the backlog in cases partly caused by the pandemic.

A £1m marketing campaign aims to boost numbers by 4,000 or a third of the current workforce. Teachers, bricklayers, stay-at-home mums, and any individuals who can display reason and sound judgment could be considered, according to an MoJ media missive.

One might assume that excludes the majority of the current Cabinet, given the ongoing scandal concerning numerous alleged lockdown-breaking parties at No 10.

Continue reading

Source: https://bit.ly/3fZLzto