Taiwanese authorities are hoping that the nation’s mobile network operators (MNOs) will have completely stopped offering 2G connectivity by the end of August 2017, the Taipei Times reports. Local telecoms regulator the National Communications Commission (NCC) has confirmed that no cellco has indicated an intention to offer services over a shared GSM network, which Asia Pacific Telecom (APT) had volunteered to operate after 2G licences expire on 30 June 2017.
According to NCC spokesperson Wong Po-tsung, there are around 1.46 million people still utilising 2G-only handsets, of which around 940,000 are actually accessing GSM-based services using a 3G-compatible SIM card, while a further 390,000 have a 4G-enabled SIM. Only 133,000 users are said to be connecting to a GSM service with a 2G-only SIM card. As such, the regulator has suggested that migrating most users to 3G or 4G alternatives should be a relatively swift process once 2G connectivity is discontinued.
While the nation’s GSM concessions expire on 30 June 2017, it has been confirmed that operators can continue to offer 2G services over their respective 4G infrastructure until 31 August.