3G Network Shutdown

Cricket Wireless is committed to supporting the growth of mobile Internet and providing the best customer experience. As a result, Cricket plans to end service on 3G (UMTS) wireless networks by February 2022. This will allow additional space on Cricket's mobile Internet network. At that time, Cricket will require all customers to use a compatible HD Voice device for voice-and-data plans or an LTE-capable data-only device for data-only plans. If you currently have Cricket service on an HD Voice-capable device or an LTE-capable data-only device that is compatible with the Cricket network, you will not be impacted by these network changes.

Starting January 19, 2021, Cricket will no longer activate devices that customers bring to Cricket if the device is not HD Voice-capable or an LTE-capable data-only device compatible with the Cricket network.

Current customers:

  • Without an HD Voice-capable device need to upgrade to a compatible device by February 2022 and should not move their SIM card to another non-HD Voice-capable device.
  • Who move their SIM card to a device that is not HD Voice-capable will experience an interruption in service. Important: Moving the SIM card back to a non-HD Voice-capable device will not restore service, even if you previously had service on that device. To restore service, you must move the SIM card to an HD Voice-capable device that is compatible with the Cricket network.
  • To determine network compatibility, check your IMEI.

New customers attempting to activate service:

  • Can purchase a device sold by Cricket, or
  • Can bring their own HD Voice-capable device, or an LTE-capable data-only device, compatible with the Cricket network.

To determine if your device is compatible with Cricket’s network, check your IMEI.

FAQs

Mobile Internet usage has increased significantly over the last decade. Data traffic on Cricket's wireless network has increased exponentially. Transferring capacity to our more advanced wireless networks will help more customers have a better experience.
 
UMTS stands for Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service. It is a third generation “3G” mobile cellular communications system. Today’s 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) is a higher standard that offers improved speeds and functionality.
 
Talk and data services won’t work on a 3G device after we shut down the 3G network. All voice-and-data devices will need to be HD Voice-capable and compatible with the Cricket network. Data-only devices need to be LTE capable. Check device compatibility.
There will be no impact to HD Voice-capable devices purchased from Cricket. However, not all HD Voice-capable BYOD phones will work on the Cricket HD Voice network. See if your device will be compatible after February 2022 using the IMEI checker
If you move your SIM card to a device that is not HD Voice-compatible with the Cricket network, you will experience an interruption in service. Moving the SIM card back to a non-HD Voice-capable device will not restore service, even if you previously had service on that device. To restore service, you must move the SIM card to an HD Voice-capable device that is compatible with the Cricket network, or upgrade your phone. To upgrade, sign in to My Account and select the line you wish to upgrade. Explore HD Voice-capable phones.
Cricket Wireless will prevent new activations of non-VoLTE devices that are not compatible with the network from working on the network beginning January 19, 2021. Customers who activate a non-HD Voice-capable BYOD device prior to January 19, 2021 can continue to use this device with uninterrupted Cricket service until the 3G network shutdown in February 2022. These customers should not try to move their SIM card to another non-HD Voice device to avoid an interruption in service prior to February 2022. After the 3G network shutdown, customers will need a compatible HD Voice device for continued voice-and-data service on the Cricket Wireless network or an LTE-capable device for data-only services. Note: Dates are subject to change. Not all HD Voice-capable BYOD phones work on the Cricket HD Voice network.
We believe it's important to be transparent about our plans for the 3G network. Our spectrum reallocation efforts will continue until February 2022. We're using this time to work proactively with customers using our 3G network today to manage their migration to the more advanced networks.
Cricket has a wide variety of rate plans and devices. If you upgrade your device, you may need a new rate plan.
We anticipate a smooth transition. It's unlikely, but possible, that some 3G customers could see minor temporary service issues while we're completing this work. We'll work hard to help customers continue to receive a good network experience.
We can't speak to our competitors' plans. Adding spectrum and managing our existing spectrum for its most efficient use provides customers with the best wireless experience. This is a top priority for Cricket.
If action is required, you'll be notified before February 2022. However, we encourage you to upgrade your 3G or non-HD Voice devices as early as possible. Additionally, data-only devices will need to be HD Voice-capable. Upgrading now will allow you to begin taking advantage of our most advanced wireless services. Our spectrum reallocation efforts have begun and will continue between now and February 2022.
Cricket has a wide variety of rate plans and devices. If you upgrade your device, you may need a new rate plan.
You may be eligible for special offers if you choose to upgrade your phone. You can visit a Cricket retail location or contact customer service online or by phone to learn more about available offers.