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EE pledges to boost 4G network to 95% of UK

26/04/2016 by Stuart Wilson


EE has pledged to grow 4G coverage from 60% of UK landmass to 95% by 2020, as part of a £1 billion investment in network improvement.

The Financial Times reports that the plans to provide blanket 4G mobile internet across the UK will leave rivals "scrambling to catch up in terms of coverage".

"For the average smartphone user, not-spots aren't tolerated and 2G doesn't deliver what they need. Customers want 4G speeds everywhere they go, and mobile operators are too used to saying 'no' to new coverage," said Marc Allera, who took over as chief executive of the BT division following the departure of Olaf Swantee.

"Today, I'm saying 'yes', with an ambition to go further than any operator has ever gone, and with the ultimate aim of covering the whole UK with 4G."

EE's announcement that it will provide complete geographic coverage will be music to the ears of those politicians, including British Prime Minister David Cameron, who in the past have spoken out on the issue of mobile non-spots.

To achieve the UK-wide 4G coverage objective, more than 750 new sites will be built. The telecoms firm is also set to roll out 4G Calling (VoLTE) across the UK to enable both voice and data over 4G. The service is already available in London, Birmingham, Bristol, Manchester, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast, Leeds and Newcastle, but it will be live everywhere by July.

The FT says the planned improvements shows "the combined power of the country's largest fixed and mobile groups". However, the move will not be welcomed by market rivals Three, whose owner CK Hutchison faces seeing a deal to buy O2 blocked by competition regulators in Brussels.


EE, 4G, UK, Network, mobile

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