World’s first mobile and fixed line 4G trial goes live


BT and Everything Everywhere have joined forces for the first ever trial of 4G LTE services for both mobile and fixed line customers.

The communications giants will provide shared LTE services for 100 mobile and 100 fixed-wireless broadband triallists in Cornwall.

The 4G LTE will be delivered using 10MHz of test 800MHz in the St Newlyn East and the surrounding area of South Newquay.

The final 10 per cent of the country won't be covered by Government funds.

With many wondering how to get broadband to the final 10 per cent of the UK population who receive either poor or no connectivity, LTE could be a good option.

Other options being explored include satellite transmissions and use of so-called white spaces.

"The final 10 per cent of the country won't be covered by Government funds and is exceedingly difficult to reach with the available standard fixed line solutions," said Nigel Stagg, CEO of BT Wholesale.

"Our proof of concept trial in Cornwall will test the capabilities and services that a shared fixed and mobile data network can support and is just one of the technologies, along with fibre, that we are looking at to offer a possible solution to the rural broadband challenge."

Wide scale deployment of 4G won't happen in the UK until 2017. The rollout should begin in 2013 if delays to the upcoming spectrum auction do not interfere with progress.

The auction has already been delayed by three to six months something the Open Digital Policy group has claimed will cost the UK up to 366 million.

Earlier this week, George Osborne committed 150 million for the improvement of mobile coverage, but there was no mention of helping push 4G forward.

The UK is far behind other nations when it comes to 4G. The US, Germany, Sweden, Finland and Korea have all made 4G available to their citizens.

With the Government planning to make the UK the best connected country in Europe by 2015, the Coalition will want to ensure there are no more delays to the auction.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.