LTE Based 4G Services Coming to the UK by This Christmas
UK based Everything Everywhere has announced plans for its LTE network launch, and to drop the oft-criticized name of the company for a shorter, if related version.
The company is to slowly drop the Orange and T-Mobile brands that make up its two subsidiary networks, but will also launch a third consumer brand for its LTE services - to be branded as "EE".
Over the coming months customers using Orange and T-Mobile will begin to see their phone signal indicator change to EE, whether they are on 3G or GSM. Orange and T-Mobile plans will continue to be offered to new and existing customers, and existing customers will also be among the first to have the opportunity to access 4G through a move to the new EE customer brand.
Four cities -- London, Bristol, Cardiff and Birmingham -- will see EE's 1800Mhz based LTE services switched on today for the company's engineers to begin live testing and systems integration, in readiness for the customer launch.
By this Christmas, 16 cities will have LTE services - they are London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Derby, Glasgow, Hull, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Southampton.
The company will also launch with five LTE capable smartphones, a dongle and a Mi-Fi router.
The network will cover 20 million people -- a third of the population -- at launch. Nationwide 4G roll out will then continue through 2013 with 98% of UK population covered in 2014
The company was recently granted a modification to its existing 1800Mhz spectrum licenses allowing it to offer LTE services, in advance of the other networks who will have to wait for the LTE spectrum auction due early next year.
The company will also relaunch its landline ISP service at the same time as the LTE launch.