EE reveals its 5G launch plan for 2019
Written by: Sam Fenwick | Published:

EE has announced that the launch of its 5G service in 2019 will start in six cities (London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast, Birmingham and Manchester), and the operator will add another 10 over the course of the year (Glasgow, Newcastle, Liverpool, Leeds, Hull, Sheffield, Nottingham, Leicester, Coventry and Bristol).

The deployments will be located in the busiest parts of each city and EE will launch with multiple smartphone partners as well a 5G home router with external antenna. BT’s technology team is virtualising elements of the core network for 5G rollout in 2019 and is also building a 5G core, which it claims will be in line with the next stage of global 5G standards, with virtualised network functions on a cloud native infrastructure.

The first 1,500 sites that EE will upgrade to 5G in 2019 carry 25 per cent of all data across the MNO’s entire network, but only cover 15 per cent of the UK population. EE is upgrading transmission to 10Gbps links at each 5G site, and has tested the new links at its 5G trial sites in Canary Wharf and across East London. The busiest sites will have five carriers of 4G spectrum that will support the use of the MNO’s new 5G spectrum.

Marc Allera, CEO of BT’s consumer division, said “…This is another milestone for the UK and for our network journey – we’ll keep evolving as we move to one, smart network for our customers. We have an ambition to connect our customers to 4G, 5G or Wi-Fi 100 per cent of the time.”

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