EE will switch on its 5G network on 30 May

Darnell Taylor
May 22, 2019

Telecoms giant EE will this month become the first operator in Britain to launch a 5G network but will do so without Huawei technology as originally planned, the company said on Wednesday.

UK MOBILE OPERATOR EE has announced that it will switch on its 5G network on 30 May, beating rival Vodafone to the punch.

The networks will launch in six cities - London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham and Belfast, with plans to expand to more by the end of 2019 and even more in 2020. Phase two will bring the full next-generation 5G core network, while EE envisions phase three enabling the "tactile internet", where a sense of touch can be added to remote real-time interactions.

Aberdeen, Bournemouth, Brighton, Cambridge, Dundee, Exeter, Ipswich, Norwich, Plymouth and York are on the list to get 5G coverage in 2020.

EE is to launch its 5G mobile network in the United Kingdom on May 30 - but Devon will have to wait a little longer for the state-of-the-art technology. EE plans to expand 5G coverage across the United Kingdom every month, with ten more cities set to gain access before the end of the year.

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The first 1,500 sites to benefit now carry 25% of all data across the whole network, but only cover 15% of the United Kingdom population. SIM-only plans will also be on offer from £32, equipping early 5G adopters with between 20GB and 100GB data.

EE said they expect customers to experience an increase in speeds of around 100-150Mbps "even in the busiest areas".

The first devices EE will offer on its 5G plans include the OnePlus 7 Pro, the Samsung Galaxy S10, the Oppo Reno 5G, the LG V50 ThinQ, a 5G home router and an HTC Wi-Fi device. EE's 5G smart plans, which will come with "swappable benefits" including exclusive add-ons for 5G customers, will offer customers between 10GB and 120GB data, with prices starting from £54 per month.

EE has just announced its radical 5G upgrade will launch next week.

All of the above is said to reflect Phase 1 of EE's 5G rollout: a "non-standalone" deployment focused on using the combined power of 4G and 5G to give customers the "fastest, most reliable mobile broadband experience they've ever had". He promised the network wouldn't throttle its 4G to make its 5G seem faster, but said that in the initial stages the two networks would work together to provide customers with the best experience.

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