We never thought we’d see the day, but it looks as though 4G in the UK is just around the corner. OfCom has awarded Everything Everywhere the right to use its existing airwaves to make it happen, but not everyone’s so happy.
The uber network, which is comprised of T-Mobile and Orange, will now be able to tweak its existing 1800MHz spectrum waves to bring 4G to its users as of September 11th. That’s a full six months before O2 and Vodafone will be able to bring their solutions to market. And that’s ruffled a few feathers.
Whilst the obviously chuffed Everything Everywhere claims that “Ofcom’s decision to make 4G available this year is great news for the UK,” Vodafone’s not so pleased, blasting the governing body in question.
“We are frankly shocked that Ofcom has reached this decision. The regulator has shown a careless disregard for the best interests of consumers, businesses and the wider economy through its refusal to properly regard the competitive distortion created by allowing one operator to run services before the ground has been laid for a fully competitive 4G market,” the company said in a statement.
OfCom’s 800MHz and 2.6GHz band auction is set for 2013, at which point the networks lying in wait will pounce. And they’ll want to: if the iPhone 5 launches with the right kind of 4G, Orange and T-Mobile will be able to offer 4G exclusively on these shores for a good few months.