World turning on 4G

Vodafone and O2 will launch their 4G networks tomorrow, but today EE claimed it has already covered 100 towns and cities.

Superfast 4G mobile access reached its 100th town this morning, as network EE sought to capitalise on its head start with the new technology. The key to a successful 4G launch is making the service available in as many places as possible – the more people use 4G, the more they want 4G. The new technology has built amazing momentum with one of the fastest 4G roll outs in the world, a strong range of devices, great content offers and compelling pricing.
The Lancashire town of Accrington as the milestone development, announcing a new tranche of 4G deployments that will take high-speed mobile access, commonplace in America and Asia, to 105 UK towns and cities by the end of the month.
Rival networks O2 and Vodafone begin to launch their networks tomorrow, but will be live in just a handful of major conurbations and will offer only half the speeds EE is claiming in some areas.
Vodafone is to launch initially only in London, and says it will be available in major cities including Birmingham, Bradford, Coventry, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield before the end of the year. O2 will launch in London, Leeds and Bradford tomorrow, and in 10 more towns by the end of the year.
Vodafone has, however, started what some analysts expect to turn into a full-blown price war, with its cheapest package offering an unlimited data allowance for the first three months.
EE said that this month it would also be turning on 4G in Ashford, Bicester, Colchester, Guildford, Milton Keynes, Redhill, Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells and Woking, claiming that it now covers 60pc of the UK population, with its ‘double-speed’ service already stretching out of London to smaller areas including Sunderland, Sutton Coldfield, Walsall, West Bromwich and Wolverhampton.
The company was granted a head start on its rivals when it was permitted by communications regulator Ofcom to use spectrum it already owned prior to a spectrum auction. While EE claims that UK customers have taken up the service at a more rapid pace than anywhere else in the world, the adoption rate has not spurred either Vodafone or O2 to roll out their own services fast enough to provide serious competition for customers outside London.


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