Government agrees to faster 4G roll-out
|03 Oct 2012 10:48 BST||Back|
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4G services will be available across most of the UK in the first half of 2013, Culture Secretary Maria Miller has confirmed.
This announcement follows a meeting with mobile operators yesterday where the Government agreed to accelerate the 4G LTE roll-out. It was scheduled to go live in autumn 2013.
Everything Everywhere (EE) will be the first to offer 4G in the UK – its service will be available in 10 UK cities from 30 October and will cover 16 by the end of the year.
Yesterday’s announcement will allow Vodafone and O2 to compete with EE earlier than expected.
“The deal, worth up to £3bn to the UK economy, will give people internet speeds on smartphones and tablets up to 10 times faster than currently available,” said a Government statement.
“I am grateful to the mobile operators for their cooperation in bringing forward vital 4G services,” Miller said. “By speeding up the delivery of 4G in the UK, the Government is creating enormous opportunities. It is up to the operators to now deliver the services that businesses and consumers expect and we are confident they will succeed,”
Speaking at a conference in Brussels on Tuesday (2 October) Neelie Kroes, the EU’s commissioner for the digital agenda also pushed for better European 4G roll-out: “Without faster 4G roll-out, device makers won’t take Europe into account when planning their latest smartphones.”
Kroes urged member states to back a plan to use around €50bn directly from the EU budget to invest in projects to expand the reach and availability of 4G services.