YOU ARE AT:5GEE to launch live 5G trial in London in October

EE to launch live 5G trial in London in October

The U.K. carrier said five businesses and five homes will be connected to 5G technology during the trial

The United Kingdom’s largest mobile carrier, EE, plans to launch what it claims to be the U.K.’s first live 5G trial network in East London in October.

Under the 5G trial, EE will connect 10 sites around East London in areas including City Road, Old Street, Hoxton Square, St Paul’s and Chiswell Street. Five small businesses and five homes will be connected to 5G, using prototype 5G broadband devices.

EE said it aims to deliver live speeds in excess of one gigabit per second with this first 5G trial in London.

“We want the U.K to be a global leader in 5G as part of our ambition to create a world-leading digital economy that works for everyone. Together with the government’s own test beds and trials programme, industry initiatives like this will help deliver the benefits of this new revolutionary technology to businesses and consumers across the UK,” said Margot James, minister for digital.

“This live trial is a big step forward in making the benefits of 5G a reality for our customers, and in making sure that the UK is at the front of the pack for 5G technology. We’re focusing our resource and experience across EE and BT to ensure that we continue to lead the UK market with a mobile network that keeps giving our customers the best speeds and the best coverage,” said Marc Allera, CEO of BT’s consumer business.

“5G is a fundamental part of our work to build a converged, smart network that keeps our customers connected to the things that matter most,” Allera added.

U.K. telcos recently obtained spectrum for the future provision of 5G services. BT-owned EE won 40 megahertz for which it paid £303 million (currently $407 million).

Three secured 20 megahertz of 3.4 GHz spectrum at a cost of £151.3 million. Vodafone won 50 megahertz of spectrum in the 3.4GHz frequency band after paying £378 million, while Telefónica-owned O2 picked up 40 megahertz for £318m.

In April, Vodafone tested the new 3.4GHz radio spectrum band on a live 5G network, which ran between Manchester and the company’s headquarters in Newbury. In order to carry out the 5G spectrum test, Vodafone used a site at its Manchester contact center, which houses around 1,000 customer service employees, and its offices in Newbury. The test relied on massive MIMO technology combined with 3.4GHz running over the telco’s core 4G network.

Earlier this year, the U.K. government allocated £25 million in new funding to six 5G pilots across the country. The six projects are run by small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), universities and local authorities. The pilots will each help to pave the way for the roll out of 5G technology in the coming years, the government said.

The selected pilots will test 5G across a range of applications, including smart farming with drones, using the internet of things (IoT) to improve healthcare in the home, increasing manufacturing productivity and maximizing the future benefits of self-driving cars.




Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro covers Global Carriers and Global Enterprise IoT. Prior to RCR, Juan Pedro worked for Business News Americas, covering telecoms and IT news in the Latin American markets. He also worked for Telecompaper as their Regional Editor for Latin America and Asia/Pacific. Juan Pedro has also contributed to Latin Trade magazine as the publication's correspondent in Argentina and with political risk consultancy firm Exclusive Analysis, writing reports and providing political and economic information from certain Latin American markets. He has a degree in International Relations and a master in Journalism and is married with two kids.

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