Contact Us
pexels lukas 296085

What is 3G Connectivity and Key Problems of this Network

Table of contents

In the 2G and 4G age, 3G connectivity is the unsung hero which makes things easy and faster to browse the internet, watch videos, and download different files rapidly. 3G has certainly changed our use of recent mobile phones, but there exist some key problems associated with it as well. We would be discussing those key points in this blog post. Before we discuss the core issues facing the networks, read what 3G mobile network means. 

So, what does 3G stand for? 3G connectivity is known as the third generation of mobile telephony and refers to a mobile communications standard that provides faster internet connectivity speeds that allow applications such as multimedia streaming, video conferencing, and mobile gaming. The networks operating under this standard are on several frequencies and provide data speeds of up to 7 Mbps.

Areas of Application 3G

Now that you know the answer to “what is 3G?”, let’s talk about areas where it might be useful.

Mobile Devices

Amongst the major areas where the 3G network has had an incredible impact is mobile devices. With 3G technology, mobile phones, and tablets now support HD videos as well as faster downloads amongst other real-time navigation. This was to be the catalyst toward game-changing technology such as Uber, which serves millions of people globally.

Phone Networks

Another large area of 3G networks’ potential applications lies in phone networks. In areas where there is a lack of fiber-optic cable connection, 3G networks have emerged as a vital data-carrying tool. It is often used by telecommunication companies to ease phone service in dense urban cores and rural locations. 

Internet Routers

3G networks offer a cheaper alternative to internet services in the countries that it introduced as the way for internet infrastructure. It is used as the backbone to gain access from areas where other types of Internet service lack signal, compared with prosperous countries.

Computer Connectivity

The 3rd generation brought up a new usage of laptops, transforming them into portable ones that can fetch Internet service without using cable connections. This is a solution used through USB dongles that offer excellent upload and download speeds.

Vehicle Telematics

3G networks are utilised in real-time traffic updates, car alarms, and even anti-theft systems for vehicles. With more advanced technologies come new deployment practices that make sure vehicles are well-connected and secure.

Backup via Cellular

3G networks became popular with remote cloud backups and transmission. This made it a favourite backup solution on mobile devices. It can also be part of a contingency connection if the main internet service fails.

6 Main Steps of 3G Connection

Device Activation

The first steps of 3G connection include activation of that device. For most people, this step is easy, but one must check whether his/her phone or tablet has its 3G plan provisioned or not. You can activate your device by inserting a SIM card with the 3G data plan provisioned.

Network Registration

Your device must register on the 3G network to run. Once your device is activated, it will then get into a hunt for the strongest 3G signal within its reach in that location. When your device finds strong 3G signals, it registers on the network and gets an IP address.

Authentication Process

Once the device is registered with the 3G network, the network will authenticate your device by matching its International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number to its database. If the IMEI is approved, then it is authenticated and approved to use the 3G network. Besides, the authentication process ensures that the data transmitted is encrypted and secure.

Signal Handover

The handover signal step is taken for granted a lot, but it's also important in keeping your device connected to the 3G network. In a mobile network, the signal handover step enables your device to move from one base station without losing its link.

Data Transmission

Once authenticated and activated on the 3G network, you can now start transmitting data at faster speeds. The transmission of data through 3G occurs through bursts of packets. Every transmission has an individual channel coding scheme that allows quick data transfer.  

Network Termination

The termination of the network is the last step in the 3G connection process. Once your device is no longer working or has been shut down, it must terminate the connection. Your device will either disconnect manually or automatically, since it depends on what type of device and which 3G network. Keeping your connection open when it’s not used can consume not only your data plan but also drain your battery.

Key Problems of 3G Network You Should Know

You can’t talk about 3G’s meaning without turning a light to problems with 3G networks.  

Network Congestion

One of the most common 3G signal issues occurs during peak hours of network congestion. Many people using a given network results in slowed speeds on the said network, eventually leading to dropped calls, poor voice quality, slow data transfer, and a user experience that leaves much to be desired. 

Slower Data Speeds

Among other problems with 3G, there are slower data speeds compared to 4G and 5G. This can take time to download, buffering, and overall poor connectivity on the internet. This means it holds a large impact on businesses that rely on fast connectivity for video conferencing, transfer of data, and more services.

Compatibility Issues

3G network technology is declining and with newer technologies getting better and better, older devices get out of date or obsolete with the newer devices. So, 3G-based older devices may soon stop working properly or may even have no way of connecting to the internet at all. 

Battery Drain

Another issue with using 3G networks is that, in comparison to newer networks like 4G and 5G, they drain batteries faster. This can be a serious problem for businesses that depend on mobile devices, which have to be recharged at regular intervals. Also, battery drain also leads to devices getting less durable as they get replaced regularly.

Discover UCtel Experience in 3G Networks and Indoor Signal Boosting Solutions

Consistent communication and uninterrupted connectivity – these two are the face of your company and affect your daily operations at large. If you often appear in the dead zone or your calls won’t go smoothly because of a bad connection, it’s the right time to contact UCtel for help. We will fix 3G signal issues and guarantee that you won't experience weaker 3G signal issues inside your establishments anymore!

Final Thoughts

Wrapping up, we hope we answered your question “what is 3G network?” in detail. 3G connection has proved to be an elementary necessity for individuals for connecting with each other. Though outdated, 3G mobile technology still adds to the successful transmission of data. It doesn’t go without some drawbacks, but on the whole, it is value for money. Contact UCtel and stay connected wherever you go.


Find answer below or contact us to ask more about UCtel

Is the 3G network still available?

Yes! While newer networks have emerged which led to the 3G switch-off, 3G is still accessible in many areas.  Check our recent articles to find out more information on what 3G connectivity is and when it is about to shut down.

Is 3G a good network?

For browsing and calls, basic 3G is decent. However, if you crave faster speeds and better performance for streaming and gaming, you might want to consider upgrading to a 4G or 5G plan. Read the full review about 3G explained to get more insights.

What is the speed of the 3G network?

3G offers average download speeds of about 5.9 Mbps and upload speeds of 2.0 Mbps. Keep in mind that these speeds might vary based on your location and network congestion.

What is the range of 3G?

The range of a 3G tower can reach up to several miles, but the signal strength might decrease with distance from the tower. Factors like terrain and obstacles can also impact signal coverage.

What is the maximum capacity of 3G?

3G can handle moderate data traffic, but it's not as efficient as newer networks. If you're using multiple devices and streaming content often, you might notice slower speeds during peak usage times. Consider higher-speed options for heavy usage. Read what 3G means for your business to help you decide.

Contact the team to discover how UCtel can improve your digital connectivity and communications.

Get started with UCtel

    Upload floor plans (PDF)

    No file selected

    Latest news from UCtel

    Read more

    This website uses cookies. By using this website you consent to our use of these cookies. For more information visit our Privacy Policy