UAE 2G network (GSM) to be shut down by the end of 2022

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has announced that shutdown of 2G network (GSM) in the UAE will take place at the end of 2022, with directing resources allocated to 5G to support new generations of mobile networks.

TRA indicated that UAE service providers will provide all means of support to groups that may be affected by the 2G shutdown.

The ICT sector is one of the most developed sectors in recent decades. We have witnessed the level of development in mobile networks where generations have progressed from the first to the fifth generation that many countries in the world have begun to implement on the ground, with the UAE in the forefront, as the first in the Arab region and the fourth in the world in the launch and use of 5G, according to the Global Communication Index. Thus, it is highly important for telecom service providers to stop operating less effective networks to allow the operation and activation of the latest and most effective networks.

H.E. Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, TRA Director General

H.E. Al Mansoori added: “Mobile technology is one of the main drivers of innovation in the business world, and telecom companies must constantly develop their networks to keep pace with the rapid and continuous developments in the telecom sector. Today, we are on the threshold of a new era characterized by comprehensive digital transformation, Internet of Things and smart city, where a faster, stronger and more capable network is needed to withstand the communication between vast numbers of devices.”

This decision comes as part of TRA’s continuous efforts in deployment of 5G in the UAE as the main engine of the digital transformation process, the fourth industrial revolution and artificial intelligence. Moreover, this step reflects the accelerating development of the telecommunications sector, in which mobile networks are constantly evolving and changing. An old technology disappears when new technology emerges so that telecommunications companies must stop operating the least effective networks to allow the operation and activation of the most effective networks.

The activation of 2G network (GSM) in the UAE dates back to 1994, and it is still effective to date, despite the succession of network generations up to 5G, which the UAE has been in the lead of its application through a comprehensive strategy and clear roadmap.

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