After four years of planning, AT&T officially pulled the plug on its 2G network. For owners of the original iPhone, this news means your nine-year-old handset is now officially dead and relegated to a new role as a nostalgic paperweight. It’s the end of an era, and we’re sorry for your loss.
You wouldn’t expect this news to impact but a small segment of retro gadget owners, so it might come as a surprise to learn it actually caused a bit of a disaster in San Francisco. One of America’s — if not the world’s — most influential tech cities actually experienced some significant issues to its public transport system caused by the shutdown. For some reason, the San Francisco Muni bus and train system, NextMuni, still used the 2G network to predict the arrival times of buses and trains.
According to AT&T, the shutdown frees up valuable LTE space on the wireless spectrum, and perhaps 5G space as the company continues work on the next-gen network.