Video | Not So Legacy: The Future of Voice

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Communication networks have seen a lot of change over the past 20 years. Today, the wireless industry is shutting down 2G and 3G networks to make room for 5G, the next generation of wireless technology.

Phasing out obsolete legacy networks and repurposing the spectrum will bring enormous benefits to the public. Unlike transitions before it — including the Tech Transitions and the Analog Sunset — the Federal Communications Commission has not taken any action to supervise or coordinate the 3G Sunset.

Many Americans rely on these legacy networks for basic, reliable voice telephone service, either directly or through roaming agreements between carriers. Alarm services and other businesses still use 3G for data. Can the industry manage this transition on its own, or will the FCC need to preserve the fundamental values that have guided past transitions: universal service, consumer protection, competition, network reliability, and public safety? If the FCC does get involved, what is its proper role?

As part of our 20th Anniversary Event Series, we hosted an event on Wednesday, June 30. You were able to hear from the experts on the lessons of these communications evolutions, and what this means for the future.


Mignon Clyburn, Principal at MLC Strategies

Nell Geiser, Research Director at Communications Workers of America

Craig Settles, Industry Analyst & President at CJ S.peaks


Harold Feld, Vice President at Public Knowledge