BICS Launches Roaming SMS Translator to Support 2G and 3G Shutdowns

As telcos worldwide phase out 2G and 3G networks, BICS unveils a solution to ensure continued SMS support for travelers and devices, bridging the gap between older and newer technologies.


  • BICS launches solution for international SMS support on advanced networks.
  • Travelers retain SMS service while roaming, even as legacy networks phase out.
  • Operators face potential revenue loss without SMS support for older networks.

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BICS Launches Roaming SMS Translator to Support 2G and 3G Shutdowns
Telcos globally are sunsetting or shutting down 2G or 3G networks. In such a scenario, mobile digital communications company BICS has launched a new solution to support international SMS on more advanced networks no longer supporting 2G or 3G technologies. According to BICS, the solution supports carriers who don't support or have retired their legacy 2G and 3G networks from excluding inbound roamers from networks using older SMS protocols.

Legacy Network Transition

The solution means travelers and devices coming from mobile networks still using 2G and 3G messaging technologies won't lose the service while roaming abroad, even if local operators don't support 2G or 3G.

Operators around the world are phasing out legacy or old networks for 4G and 5G networks. However, the telecom market is evolving at different rates around the world, and not all telcos are following a similar approach, BICS says. For example, 3G is the dominant mobile technology in Sub-Saharan Africa.

As TelecomTalk reports, most operators across the globe are phasing out 2G and 3G networks and reallocating the spectrum resources to expand and enhance 4G and 5G networks. While some operators have announced 2G and 3G phaseout plans, some operators are still continuing 2G and have longer phase-out plans, supporting SMS and voice calling.

Addressing Roaming Challenges

BICS explained that apart from preventing a Roaming Gap that leaves unconnected and operators unable to monetise certain types of roaming traffic, another key issue from network SMS incompatibility is 'Welcome SMS'. Roamers will miss the important welcome communications messages and emergency information.

BICS' Solution

"Without support for SMS from 2G/3G networks, operators not only face a loss in SMS roaming revenue but also risk affecting the monetization of calls and data," the company said.

"It's great that telecoms are focused on adopting new technologies like 5G or 6G. However, it’s essential for operators to also address any potential issues that leave people behind in the pursuit of innovation," says BICS.

"BICS believes a connected world is a stronger world and is rapidly finding solutions to bridge the digital divide. Our VoLTE enabler solution released last year did this for voice services, and now SMS Translator is doing the same for SMS."

Also Read: BICS and Mavenir to Deliver VoLTE Solution for Post 2G, 3G Roaming Interoperability

While the types of mobile traffic (SMS, data, and calls) haven't changed, the protocols enabling them have changed. This means, for example, that SMS messages are essentially delivered via different 'languages' on 2G networks compared to 4G. As the name suggests, SMS Translator 'translates' between the different generations of protocols that enable the sending and receiving of messages, BICS said.

Last year, BICS collaborated with Mavenir Telecom to introduce a Voice over LTE product designed to help operators maintain roaming interoperability after 2G, 3G network sunset, TelecomTalk reported.

Reported By

Telecom Analyst

Passionately following the Indian #Telecom Industry for over a decade from Business, Consumer and a Technical perspective. My primary focus area is Consumer & Digital Experience.

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