3G/WCDMA Shield Advise

I am beginning a personal project to try and monitor some remote analog variables from my cell phone using a cellular shield. I found quite a bit of info on GSM shields, but understand that GSM is basically in sunset mode in the US.

I was hoping someone could provide some input on what the options are for 3G shields. Also, I am also looking for some advise on what US carriers are out there that would have 3G pay-as-you go service.

The only 3G shield I found was the "Cooking Hacks" website.

Any advise or additional information would be greatly appreciated. I am not very well versed in the world of cellular. I think what I am trying to attempt is very do-able, I just need a little advise on the shield and carrier to help get me started.

Thanks in advance.



Adafruit does have 3G GSM boards. They're currently $79.95 and available with and without a free SIM card for Ting. I do not see a shield, but at least they're 3G and from a reputable company.

Depending on what you're doing you can use the Ting SIM from Adafruit or you can use AT&T. Personally, I've used AT&T DataConnect Pass which gives you 1GB for 90 days for $25. All you need is a SIM from any AT&T store. You can read more about it here:

If you are a current AT&T customer you can add your Arduino to your existing account.

As for GSM networks sun setting, that's incorrect. GSM is the type of network and there are several different generations of GSM technology in use simultaneously. AT&T will be shutting down the only 2G portion of their GSM network. Since just about every cell tower and phone has 3G or better capability so there's no need for 2G at this point.


Thanks. Do you know if Adafruit has some good code examples? All I am trying to do is send an SMS text message to my mobile phone. I am trying to monitor some things at a 2nd property my wife and I own. I am OK with C/C++ and Arduino in general. However, the cellular shield stuff is new to me.

Thanks again for your help!


They have a full blown tutorial on their website. Flip through it and you'll find all of the info for both Arduino usage and hooking it up to your PC with USB. You may want to start out with the PC connection first so you can test your board easily.

Thanks. I actually went through all of their material last night. It looks like I have found the breakout I need. Thanks again for the help!

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This is ATMEGA-1284P based (through-hole for low-volume production).
The actual SIM5320 modem shield will be available from my supplier within the next couple of weeks.