The analog-to-digital TV revolution is still a year off, but the country’s oldest cellular network will be shut down in February. Wired and Associated Press provide the following list of what kinds of items will be affected.
“In particular, check phones that are kept around as 911-only phones. Such phones, which don’t have a phone number and aren’t initialized with a carrier, were given out by some donation programs that collected old phones.” Less than 1% of cell phones currently in use are analog, but the article points out that that still counts for over a million devices. Anything less than 5 years old or that can text message isn’t analog.
Car communication systems
Generally, cars from the 2003 model year and older with OnStar from General Motors Corp., TeleAid from Mercedes-Benz or Lexus Link are affected, and most won’t be upgradable. Upgrade kits are available for most OnStar systems from model years 2004 and 2005.
Home burglar and fire alarms
“Homes that have them will lose wireless backup alarms, which kick in if someone cuts the phone line.”