O2 goes live with 5G in 60 UK towns and cities
Areas of Aberdeen, Brighton and Oxford have become the latest in the UK to connect to 5G, as O2 surpassed its target to switch the network on in 50 locations by summer 2020.
Now delivering the service to 60 UK towns and cities, the news came as the operator also reached the 10,000 site milestone for its first-to-market LTE-M (Long Term Evolution, category M1) network, which will power IoT devices for business and consumer use.
O2 is the first to launch an LTW-M network, and it will cover 57% of premises and 58% of the population to connect billions of devices to the internet to collect and share data.
Billed as a development to “help rebuild Britain”, O2 said the technologies are “crucial in developing the national digital infrastructure, helping customers and businesses connect like never before to support the economy as we emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic”.
Brendan O’Reilly, CTO at O2 said: “O2 is at the forefront of connectivity which is now one of the UK’s most valued services. Our customer-centric networks, underpinned by 5G and LTE-M technologies, will help power this country into recovery as we look to rebuild Britain. As the UK faces an uncertain year ahead, it’s vital we continue to invest in new innovations and technologies to keep Britain mobile and connected.
“I believe technologies like 5G and LTE-M are going to revolutionise the way people and businesses use mobile connectivity, unlocking huge possibilities for our economy and society. We’re excited to be getting this next generation tech into the hands of more of our customers, with tariffs that are flexible and affordable.”
O2’s 5G network uses Ericsson and Nokia equipment and is designed to supplement the 4G network. £2 million a is day invested by O2 in its network in areas where customers need it most, laying the foundations for the 5G service.
O2 currently offers 4G in 19,185 cities, towns and villages across the UK and between January and May this year, it has upgraded 4G capacity in 90,954 UK postal codes.