Will ELD’s No Longer Work in 2022?

Recent industry news has it that a large majority of ELD’s may no longer be effective come early-to-mid 2022, and the reason is heavily tied to the abandonment of 3G wireless connection.

I think most of us are aware of the dying nature of 3G connection. While it used to be the fastest connection a few years ago, we all dread seeing the “3G” marker appear at the top of our smartphones because we know it will slow everything down. What’s the reason?

While devices, apps, and websites are certainly more demanding of bandwidth than they used to be, the predominant reason for the decline in speed of 3G is due to the changing wireless infrastructure. Cell phone companies have largely all moved to 4G, and talk is now coming of 5G being implemented in early-to-mid 2022.

5G promises faster data rates, lower latency, and increased bandwidth for delivering content. With today’s ecommerce world, the change seems quite necessary.

Unfortunately, with the implementation of 5G, many major cell phone and wireless technology companies will begin phasing out their 3G networks in order to reallocate resources and bandwidth to 4G and 5G. So how does this all relate to shipping and ELD’s?

The FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s) has a “revoked ELD list” that contains the model numbers for all ELD’s that are now rendered obsolete as a result of technological changes, recalls, or other issues that cause them to be defective or ineffective altogether. Currently, there are many ELD’s that rely entirely on 3G networks and are unable to work on either 4G or 5G networks. As 3G towers and resources are disposed of, these ELD’s will no longer be effective. They won’t be able to transmit necessary information to offices or law enforcement.

The switch from 3G to 4G and 5G will be incredibly helpful long-term, but for now, it’s a bit stressful (especially on the shipping industry.) Now is the time to start a conversation with your ELD providers to ask how the changes in networks are going to affect your current setup, and what you can do now to be proactive about the change. This isn’t a slow-implementation that could potentially become an issue over time – this is a change that is happening now, and the 3G sunset has already arrived. Don’t wait before switching your ELD technology if necessary.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding how these changes may affect your shipments, please don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our team members! We would love to help in any way we can. Here are some other blogs that you might also be interested in:


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