While some people have access to 4G networks in very limited locations already as part of pre-launch testing, the date for the big launch to the public was unknown. The wait is over and the date is Tuesday 30th October 2012 when Everything Everywhere will properly launch its 4G service.
The initial coverage is in just 10 cities, with maps at http://ee.co.uk/coverage showing expected outdoor coverage, though there is the caveat that not all areas on the maps may be live on day 1. A further six cities will be up and running by Christmas.
The service will be available on a range of handsets (iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy SIII LTE, Nokia Lumia 920, Nokia Lumia 820, HTC One XL and the Huawei Ascend P1 LTE), but no package information has been released yet. Hopefully at least one mobile broadband dongle and MiFi type device will be available at launch. The great advantage to MiFi devices is that you can utilise 4G data speeds without upgrading your phone, just utilise its WiFi connection to connect to the MiFi.
With EE having a six to nine month lead in the 4G arena, we would expect pricing to reflect this exclusivity and not be cheap, but hopefully once competition kicks in during 2013, packages will appear that will allow those who want to use 4G as their primary broadband connection to access to something that is affordable and possibly faster than older ADSL and ADSL2+ services.
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