One New Zealand has rescheduled its upcoming 3G switch-off for March 31, 2025.

The telco, formerly known as Vodafone NZ, had initially said it would retire 3G on August 31, 2024.

Feature: What the 2G and 3G shutoff means for 5G

New Zealand
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It will now switch off its 3G service next year along with other domestic telcos Spark and 2degrees.

"This extension is designed to give our customers a little more time to make the switch from their old phones which rely on 3G for voice calls and/or mobile data, and for our Internet of Things (IoT) customers to swap out devices like old in-vehicle modems that currently use the 3G network," said One New Zealand chief technology officer, Tony Baird.

"Overseas operators are shutting down 3G and this is another reason why customers will need to have an up-to-date phone that will be able to connect to 4G voice and data whilst traveling.”

The telco also confirmed it will switch off its 2G network on December 31, 2025. One NZ first switched on its 2G network back in 1993.

Baird added that the company's 4G and 5G rollout continues "on track and at pace," noting that it has built and upgraded over 500 sites across the country in the past eighteen months with plans for hundreds more in 2024.

Later this year, One NZ will launch a text service with SpaceX, followed by voice and data in 2025.

In neighboring Australia, the government said it's creating a working group, made up of Telstra, Optus, TPG, and the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA), to manage the 3G to 4G switchover "in a safer way," which could also delay planned 3G shutdowns in the country.

The announcement of the working group comes after it was revealed an estimated 740,000 Australians with 4G handsets could be impacted by the shutdown of 3G.

The group will focus on a subset of 4G handsets configured by the manufacturer to use 3G for calling 000 (aka Triple Zero, Australia's main emergency service number), despite otherwise working over 4G to make voice calls.