Telstra 3G Network Shutdown: What it means for your fleet
Published on January 19, 2023 in Updates by Geotab Team | 2 minute read
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Telstra 3G shutdown is fast approaching. For many fleets, it will take months to update their tech. The time to plan is now.
Telstra has announced that they will be discontinuing their 3G mobile phone service from June 2024. This will mean that every fleet with a 3G device in their vehicles will need to upgrade.
This is more than just a software update. Geotab’s devices are often able to update software or firmware over-the-air (OTA), but there simply isn’t a quick fix to push on this occasion.
The modem that connects to the mobile (cellular) network is a critical component within your connected vehicle hardware, and it’s that we need to replace. The easiest course of action is to swap out the whole device.
Geotab sees this as an opportunity — if you have a 3G connected fleet, how long has it been since you did an audit of your needs? We are always releasing new features at the leading edge of connected vehicle technology, so you could be accessing more and better data, taking up new features and solutions, and fixing problems you’ve been ignoring for years.
What should you do?
Geotab and our Partners are here to help you plan and manage a new hardware rollout, but we recommend first taking a step back and analysing where you are, and where you want to get to.
1. Assess your exposure
Firstly, we’ll need to figure out what definitely needs to change. We will have to begin with an inventory of how many 3G devices you have in the field, and compare this with a list of your existing assets. The end result must be that you have a fully connected fleet, before and after June 2024.
2. Reassess your needs
Let’s then re-do the analysis of your connected vehicle technology needs. Tech always moves forward faster than you can purchase, so Geotab or our Partners learn more about your business, your pain points and opportunities, and match your unique situation with the technology stack to keep your fleet moving forward.
Do you want to go paperless? Are your maintenance costs out of control? Is safety more of a concern? Or maybe you want to include more EVs in your fleet? The right mix of Geotab solutions and our Marketplace of opportunities awaits.
3. Identify opportunities for upgrade
The last thing a fleet manager wants to do is pull their entire fleet off the road to swap hardware. Let’s therefore plan a staggered rollout between now and sunset. For many fleets, the standard time of ownership of an asset is 3-5 years, meaning a portion of your fleet can naturally turn over, with a 4G device installed into new vehicle deliveries.
For assets that will be with you longer than June 2024, they will have servicing times when they are off-road anyway, so a robust plan will leverage that time for a new installation, and the upgrade will be seamless. It could be worth having your regular mechanic technicians become certified Geotab installers, so they’re available for all your telematics installation needs.
4. Set a timeline and get started
With the steps above, you now have a clear picture of the scale and scope of your program. The deadline has been set, so now we can simply impose a timeline, and communicate with your drivers or fleet coordinators. With a well planned program, your hardware migration should be as simple as updating work orders and procurement, to ensure everyone is on the same page.
What about the old devices?
Many organisations - including Geotab - see sustainability as a key objective of every project. This rollout should be no exception. Geotab works with R2-certified recycling services to keep e-waste from landfill. All you need to do is make sure your older GO device, or another supplier’s hardware, is returned to your Geotab Authorised Reseller.
Our Partners will collate returned hardware and we will have it transported to a recycling facility, so the materials can see a new life in another form.
Importantly, this is at no cost to you - Geotab sees this as being a responsible supplier, managing the lifecycle of our products.
How to get started?
Geotab customers: speak to your Authorised Reseller. Our Partners are ready to help you manage the migration, and will be most familiar with your fleet and new opportunities you might be able to access.
If you have another supplier’s telematics service, we are still here to help. Contact Geotab to be connected with a suitable Partner, and we can develop a package to suit your fleet’s unique needs.
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Geotab's blog posts are intended to provide information and encourage discussion on topics of interest to the telematics community at large. Geotab is not providing technical, professional or legal advice through these blog posts. While every effort has been made to ensure the information in this blog post is timely and accurate, errors and omissions may occur, and the information presented here may become out-of-date with the passage of time.
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