BT joins with Everything Everywhere for 4G trials

A laptop on grass

BT Wholesale and Everything Everywhere will be trialling 4G broadband across rural Cornwall later this year.

The two telecoms colossus' announced the partnership this morning, which will enable 100 fixed line customers, along with 100 mobile users, to gain access. However, it might not be worth getting too excited about speeds.

BT has been testing the technology in its Suffolk labs, where speeds have reached 100Mbps. Yet a spokesperson from BT told IT PRO the aim was to bring the "not-spots and not-a-lot spots" up to 2Mbps in line with Government targets, rather than providing superfast broadband.

"The idea is to improve experiences of [those] getting under 2Mbps," they said. "We are seeing what we can get out of it [and] we are not putting a cap on it [but] the potential remains to be seen."

The trial will cover an area of 25 km sq in St Newlyn, South Newquay and use 2 x 10MHz of test spectrum from the 800MHz band due to be auctioned later this year.

We asked BT how much the firms were shelling out to fund the scheme, but we hadn't been given a firm answer at the time of publication.

Whilst BT will focus on the fixed line, Everything Everywhere formed out of the partnership between T-Mobile and Orange will provide 4G ready handsets and 4G broadband dongles.

Tom Alexander, CEO of Everything Everywhere, said: "We strongly believe that, by sharing our network and mobile assets in this way, we can make a valuable contribution to the economics of rural broadband services."

As well as the two headline companies, Nokia Siemens Networks and Huawei are getting involved at the infrastructure level, providing some of the equipment necessary for the trial.

The scheme will be free to those taking part and willing participants can register their interest to be involved online.

Jennifer Scott

Jennifer Scott is a former freelance journalist and currently political reporter for Sky News. She has a varied writing history, having started her career at Dennis Publishing, working in various roles across its business technology titles, including ITPro. Jennifer has specialised in a number of areas over the years and has produced a wealth of content for ITPro, focusing largely on data storage, networking, cloud computing, and telecommunications.

Most recently Jennifer has turned her skills to the political sphere and broadcast journalism, where she has worked for the BBC as a political reporter, before moving to Sky News.