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Vodafone, O2 rolling out 4G service in the UK

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 29 Aug 2013 18:32

Vodafone, O2 rolling out 4G service in the UK Vodafone and O2 have begun rolling out 4G mobile services in the United Kingdom, a year after rival EE first launched its own 4G service.
Vodafone will initially provide 4G service to parts of London, while O2 will also launch 4G services in London, Leeds and Bradford. Three, the largest mobile network in the UK, will begin rolling out 4G services from December, starting with London, Birmingham and Manchester.

EE has been offering 4G in the UK for almost a year after communications regulator Ofcom allowed the firm to use licensed spectrum for its service. The other carriers in the region protested the green light for EE because they had to wait for Ofcom to auction off spectrum for 4G services.

However, Vodafone and O2 are being accused of dragging their feet on 4G to sell it as a premium service.

"The UK's mobile networks are hedging their bets with 4G," Steven Hartley, principal analyst at telecoms consultancy Ovum, told the BBC. "They are trying the same strategy they used when they rolled out 3G, which is to offer 4G as a premium service to consumers, in an effort to move them onto expensive phone tariffs."

Three has said it will launch its 4G services starting in December with unlimited data usage at no extra cost compared to its 3G deals.

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