Celcom 3G services are no longer available in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and in parts of Selangor, Pahang and Perak.
The 3G network shutdown was completed on 11 November 2021, as planned, to improve Celcom 4G coverage and speeds. However, at the time of writing, MalaysianWireless notes that Celcom has yet to utilise and refarm all its 3G spectrum at these areas, for 4G services.
As of today, Celcom took its 3G network offline at the following areas, since 25 October 2021:
- Selangor – Kuala Selangor, Petaling, Klang, Kuala Langat, Hulu Selangor, Sabak Bernam, Gombak, Sepang, Hulu Langat
- Wilayah Persekutuan – Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya
- Pahang – Bentong
- Perak – Bagan Datuk
- Kelantan – Pasir Mas, Gua Musang, Kota Bharu, Pasir Puteh, Machang, Kuala Krai, Tumpat, Tanah Merah, Bachok
- Pahang – Kuantan
- Terengganu – Kemaman, Kuala Terengganu, Kuala Nerus, Besut, Marang, Dungun, Hulu Terengganu
Celcom 3G network shut down in the following areas are currently in progress:
- Johor – Batu Pahat, Johor Bahru, Kulaijaya, Pontian, Kluang, Kota Tinggi, Ledang, Mersing, Muar, Segamat
- Melaka – Alor Gajah, Melaka Tengah
- Negeri Sembilan – Kuala Pilah, Port Dickson, Rembau, Seremban, Tampin
Its upcoming 3G network shut down schedule are as below:
30 November 2021 – 02 December 2021
- Sabah – Kota Kinabalu, Tuaran, Sandakan, Penampang, Papar, Putatan, Kudat, Kota Belud, Kota Marudu, Ranau, Tawau, Semporna, Sipitang, Keningau, Lahad Datu, Kunak, Pitas, Kinabatangan, Beluran, Tongod, Beaufort, Tenom, Kuala Penyu, Tambunan, Nabawan
- Wilayah Persekutuan – Labuan
16 December 2021 – 29 December 2021
- Kedah – Kota Setar, Kubang Pasu, Baling, Bandar Baharu, Kuala Muda, Kulim, Langkawi, Padang Terap, Yan
- Pahang – Cameron Highlands, Bentong, Bera, Jerantut, Lipis, Pekan, Maran, Raub, Rompin, Temerloh
- Perak – Batang Padang, Muallim, Hilir Perak, Kampar, Kerian, Kinta, Kuala Kangsar, Larut & Matang, Manjung, Perak Tengah, Hulu Perak
- Perlis – Perlis
- Pulau Pinang – Timur Laut, Barat Daya, Seberang Perai Tengah, Seberang Perai Selatan, Seberang Perai Utara
17 December 2021 – 22 December 2021
- Sarawak – Kuching, Samarahan, Bau, Lundu, Serian, Simunjan, Sri Aman, Sibu, Maradong, Mukah, Matu, Selangau, Kanowit, Kapit, Dalat, Bintulu, Tatau, Subis, Sebauh, Miri, Lawas, Limbang, Marudi, Telang Usan, Beluru, Sarikei, Tanjung Manis, Saratok, Betong, Lubok Antu, Kabong, Belaga, Pusa, Song, Pakan, Daro, Tebedu, Julau, Asajaya
- Terengganu – Hulu Terengganu
29 December 2021 – 31 December 2021
- Kelantan – Pasir Mas, Kuala Krai, Gua Musang, Tanah Merah, Pasir Puteh, Jeli, Bachok, Kota Bharu, Machang, Tumpat, Kecil Lojing
- Pahang – Kuantan
- Terengganu – Besut, Dungun, Kemaman, Setiu, Kuala Nerus, Kuala Terengganu, Hulu Terengganu, Marang
Celcom is currently the only Telco in Malaysia with a detailed 3G network shut down schedule, revealed to the public. To date, the other 3G network operators, including Maxis, Digi and U Mobile have yet to share any detailed plan of its nationwide 3G network shut down schedule.
Malaysia has planned for a nationwide 3G network shut down by the end of 2021, to improve the coverage and speeds of 4G networks. Last month, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) revealed that there were over 2.09 million 3G customers in Malaysia at the beginning of this year. As of September 2021, over 1.2 million customers have migrated to a 4G device meanwhile approximately 894k customers are still connected exclusively to 2G and 3G networks.
In September 2021, Celcom retired its 3G network in parts of Selangor: Semenyih (Hulu Langat), USJ (Subang Jaya) and Bandar Klang, as part of its proof of concept (POC) and pilot cluster.
The shut down of the Celcom 3G network affects customers without a voice over 4G LTE service. At the moment, voice calls are automatically redirected to Celcom 2G networks for customers who don’t have Voice over Long-Term Evolution (VoLTE) service enabled. VoLTE is currently not available to over 6 million Celcom prepaid customers nationwide. Celcom said it is targeting year end or early next for VoLTE service to be provisioned for prepaid customers with VoLTE devices. Celcom VoLTE is already available for postpaid customers a couple months back.
The Celcom 3G network was launched over 16 years ago on 17 May 2005, available “from Johor Bharu to Kuala Lumpur, and all the way to Kulim”, offering “speeds of up to 384 Kbps, moving to 2 Mbps in the very near future,”. Check out the original media announcement here [PDF].