MADISON (WKOW) -- Cell phone carriers are forging ahead with the 5G network rollout and 3G service is getting phased out.
By phasing out 3G, mobile carriers can free up spectrum and infrastructure to support new services and technology.
"If you have a cell phone or other older technology that uses a 3G signal, at some point this year that device is no longer going to work," said Steve Noll, a marketing and social media instructor at Madison College. "It's like switching off a TV channel. You tune into that channel, and there's nothing there."
Not only will older phones be unable to make calls or receive texts, certain medical devices, home security systems or smart watches may no longer be connected either.
Noll says if you're concerned about your device, call your carrier.
"Consumers really need to contact their network provider now and find out, is it a 3G system, is your device capable of receiving on a 4G network," he said. "If it isn't, you need to get a new device."
The good news is that there are options for people who prefer a simpler cell phone. Noll says some companies can provide the same phone that operates with the 4G and 5G signals.