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EE launches, brings LTE to UK

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 EE logo 11th September 2012

Everything Everywhere, the joint venture that controls both T-Mobile and Orange in the UK has announced the rollout of its 4G LTE network to several UK cities by the end of the year, and at the same time it will rebrand itself as just "EE".

The cities to get LTE by the end of 2012 are London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Derby, Glasgow, Hull, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Southampton.

Smartphones available on the EE LTE network will include LTE versions of the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820, the HTC One X (called the One XL in LTE guise), Huaewei Ascend P1, Samsung Galaxy S III LTE plus a Huawei USB stick and MiFi box. All of these are big, powerful and expensive smartphones, but given the speeds that you can get from LTE it does seem rather appropriate. And because the next-generation iPhone is also rumoured to have LTE support, then you can expect that this will be on EE as well.

As for branding, the EE name replaces the unlovely "Everything Everywhere" and comes with a simple but fairly elegant new logo. T-Mobile and Orange stores will be replaced with the EE format (although there will probably be some consolidation) and the network indicator on customer phones should change to "EE" soon as well. T-Mobile and Orange price plans will continue to be sold by EE, although ultimately we would expect those to be replaced at some time in the future.

 LTE download speeds If this launch goes well, then it could be a very big deal for EE and the industry in the UK as a whole. However, many customers still cannot get a reliable 3G signal on their current networks (although T-Mobile Orange have improved a lot in the past year) and LTE really must reach into all those urban nooks and crannies to be a success.

With theoretical download speeds of up to 100Mbps (we saw 45Mbps or so in test shots), LTE is certainly appealing. You can find out more about the EE network at ee.co.uk.


EE and LTE launch video

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