UK carriers: Don't hold your breath for 4G

UK carriers: Don't hold your breath for 4GA slew of comments from the UK’s leading mobile networks has confirmed our suspicions that 4G is still a long way off. The high-speed technology is already available in some areas of China and the US, but it looks like it’ll be years rather than months before we catch up.

Speaking exclusively to TechRadar, Tim Sefton, O2 UK’s New Business Development Director, began: “We're not in a position to outline timing detail on 4G.”

Contradicting his dismissive opening statement ever so slightly, however he went on to elaborate: "our first trial in Slough was very successful, and we'll be running more trials over the next 12 months. But we're looking at years rather than months before we'll have a commercial 4G network in the UK.”

Everything Everywhere (T-Mobile and Orange) was even more vague, explaining to Pocket-lint that it's "looking at the benefits that rolling out 4G could offer our customers, however there are no immediate plans to roll it out in the UK".

Pocket-lint also had a blether with Vodafone, who revealed: “we have already carried out trials of the new technology and intend to bring LTE (Long Term Evolution, the technology used by Verizon Wireless across the pond) to the UK market in the future, provided the appropriate spectrum is made available.”

And therein lies the problem, namely availability of spectrum. Ofcom won’t be auctioning additional frequencies until spring 2012, and it could take a further couple of years before the technology becomes commercially available in the UK.

No 4G in the UK until 2014? Sod that, I’m moving to China.

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dt216  Jan. 26, 2011 at 08:50

I can't wait! With all that lovely bandwidth I'll be over quota in no time woohoo! Oh, wait...

RealMatch  Jan. 26, 2011 at 13:12

If spectrum is the problem wouldn't rolling out HSPA+ on the existing 3.5G frequencies be a start.

Looks to me like the networks have more a problem with a lack of internet bandwidth than a problem with missing frequency space.


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