Everything Everywhere and BT Wholesale are working together to test 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile broadband as an alternative to fixed-line broadband in rural areas. A field trial will start from September, involving up to 100 mobile and 100 fixed-line customers living around the St Newlyn East area of Newquay. This is expected to be the UK’s first customer trial of 4G LTE high-speed broadband.
The trial will use 2 x 10MHz channels in the 800MHz spectrum and will cover an area of 25 square kilometres south of Newquay where customers currently have no or limited access to broadband services. Everything Everywhere also hopes to test 4G-enabled mobile handsets and broadband dongles as part of the trial, which could theoretically offer download speeds of more than 100 megabits per second.
Tom Alexander, CEO of Everything Everywhere, said “Our ambition is to have the best 4G network and be pioneers in enabling Britain’s superfast wireless future. 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. Our work with BT is providing a test bed for new technologies such as 4G LTE which, with the correct allocation of sub 1GHz spectrum from the Government, has the potential to make a real impact on the way in which we communicate in the future. The Government has previously stated its desire for the UK to have the best in class superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015, and we hope to help this vision become a reality.”
Nokia Siemens Networks, Huawei and the Cornwall Development Company are also supporting the trial.