T-Mobile 5G is gearing up for the future and to make room for it, it will start killing old phones from its network. According to documents obtained by AndroidPolice, the telecom giant will soon need the phone to support a technology called Voice over LTE (VoLTE) to connect to its network.
Current customers with incompatible phones should not lose cellular connectivity anytime soon, but they will reportedly need to upgrade before January next year. However, according to the internal document, T-Mobile is stopping new non-VoLTE activities starting almost immediately from 4 August.
While T-Mobile did not confirm the timeline, it told AndroidPolice that it would “phase out some older technologies over time to free up even more capacity for LTE and 5G.”
“To prepare for this and give customers the best experience, activating new lines on T-Mobile will require VoLTE enabled devices, which we’ve been offering for years now and represent heavy devices on the network We do.” The spokesman said. The move is also said to affect customers of T-Mobile’s virtual operator, Metro, formerly known as MetroPCS and Sprint.
We have reached out to T-Mobile for more information about the transition and we will update the story when we hear back.
T-Mobile follows a similar announcement by AT&T that yesterday began informing its non-VoLTE customers that they would lose service if they did not upgrade to a new phone before 2022. Similarly, Verizon no longer activates phones that do not support LTE and is in the midst of shutting down its 3G network.
VoLTE is not a new technology and has been in place for centuries. T-Mobile first launched VoLTE support for its network half a decade ago in 2014. Phones have also worked with VoLTE for years, at least in the United States and you’ll work hard to find any incompatible. Market today. T-Mobile has stopped selling non-VoLTE phones, and today all models in its lineup feature VoLTE. The update will only affect a small percentage of users who are on iPhone 5S or less or highly outdated phones imported from other countries.