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EE launches the UK's first 4G network, has plans to support Nokia Windows Phones

EE

We're at the Everything Everywhere (now 'EE') presentation for its announcement of the UK's first LTE network. The company, unveiling its new brand, will be putting EE alongside Orange and T-Mobile to offer consumers a choice of three established names to choose from for unique deals, extras and performance.

Using existing infrastructure, the LTE 4G rollout for the UK is expected to be complete by 2015 with 70% going live by the end of 2013 and 98% in 2014. The transition of both the brand and LTE network begins today, and four cities are having their LTE 'turned on' as we write - London, Birmingham, Cardiff and Bristol. 

EE Rollout

EE states they expect to have a total of 16 cities with LTE speeds by this Christmas, providing 20 million customers with a significant increase in speeds.

As we previously touched on recently, EE will be sporting Nokia Windows Phones to take full advantage of LTE capabilities. Both the Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 are in the lineup, which consists of Android, Windows Phone and mobile dongles.

EE OS

EE notes that 70,000 members of staff have been trained and 700 stores will be promoting multiple platforms, including Microsoft's mobile offering. We're well aware of the issues Windows Phone has had in the past with carrier sales staff pushing customers away from Windows Phones and onto competitor platforms. 

This could prove to be a significant step in the right direction for Windows Phone if EE markets supported devices, including the Lumia 820 and 920, aggressively.

We're still here with Android Central, so stay tuned.

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Reader comments

EE launches the UK's first 4G network, has plans to support Nokia Windows Phones

29 Comments

The timing of this is interesting - they mentioned Samsung and Nokia at the event - is that because Apple prohibts them mentioning a LTE iphone 5 before tomorrow? 
Are we going to find tomorrow that as part of the Apple announcement, that share the news that the iphone 5 will be on sale in a couple of weeks and will actually be the first LTE phone that EE offers?

Who cares, who's the very first?
According to the article on the verge and a tweet from EE,
the Lumia 820 and 920 will be among UK's first LTE phones.

LTE isn't new... Perhaps to the UK it is. The HTC Titan released in Australia earlier this year was 4G/LTE. The 900 is capable of it but was released as dual HDSPA instead

You do realise most places have yet to roll out any form of 4G network and for most places it is new, heck its even new in the places that have it now.
 
Only 40 or so countries have it and those include some pretty small ones  such as Angola, Kyrgyzstan and Tanzania. as well as some big ones USA, Russia and Japan.
 
So yeah its pretty new...

Being angolan myself I can say that indeed 4G is starting to spear in some extremely limited locations but its far from being actually available in the country or even in the capital. Should be by the start of next year hopefully

The previous commenter was concerned with who would have the first LTE phone... My point is that 'first' has already come and gone.

Tariff information and a detailed rollout plan (to help people decide whether to wait for LTE before upgrading their contract) would have been nice. Not being in one of the named cities, I could see my area upgraded in Q1 2013 (in which case I'd hold off) or it could be Q4 2014 (in which case I'd be due another upgrade and there's no point in me waiting).

A network coverage page with details and a possible map would help me decide wether or not to get a 4GEE plan... question is will 4GEE be that much more expensive than the usual price plans? I can't see the point in paying extra money if i wont be able to get 4G (LTE) unless I am visiting one of those cities.

According to The Verge; Edinburgh, Belfast, Leeds, Sheffield, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham, Derby, Hull, and Southampton will be included by Christmas. Hopefully they'll put up a page with detailed rollout info.

I can see how that could have come across and I genuinely meant no harm by it.

It was meant as a reply to Satchef1's comment in the hope that their city was included in the LTE rollout before Christmas.

Ironically, I couldn't see the list of cities included in the image of this article as I was on a poor connection at the time meaning all text and slow loading pictures :S. My apologies!

I know which cities are this year. The question is, which ones are coming after? If the price plans are reasonable I'd happily base my upgrade around EE's LTE rollout. Not knowing what's happening when makes this impossible.

Yep, I hear you now. They're also giving a generic answer over on twitter regarding additional info on rollouts. Looks like they'll just be focusing on their initial rollout for now.

I've signed up on their website to get alerted to when it comes to my postcode. Fingers crossed that the price plans are indeed reasonable.

Looking forward to telling the iPhone/Android obsessed O2 to shove it. Orange provide a very reasonable service in the South of England... I just hope we don't get screwed with a poor tarrif.

From past experiences, you stay with whatever tariff you are on even if you get to the end of your contract. The new 4G tariffs will no doubt be a bit more expensive but carry more data allowance. If you move to one of these tariffs then you want be able to change back to your current one

I think its a realy bad idea  to be exclusive to a network that covers only a small proportion of the country, also unless the price difference is massive i cant see people taking a 920 over an iPhone at this point (i still think most consumers wont have heard of lumias vs iPhone and I cant see EE spending extra on marketing them)

I wonder if the exclusivity is just for LTE devices? According to their own rollout plan EE's network won't have full coverage until 2015.

Hopefully this will be the case, I think it would be a very bad idea to launch the Lumia 920 on only 4G (LTE). I really want a Lumia 920 but I am not willing to pay the extra cost that a 4G (LTE) phone contract comes with for no benafit with me what so ever! Hopefully this will be cleared up in the coming weeks. The next month or so id going to be really busy for the tech world.

I use Orange at home but to be honest I could not give a monkey too much apart from the fact I have an original 0973 number now 07973 which I feel some sort of need to protect as a early adopter of Orange joining them in its first year.
 
EE tell me that my business contract will migrate to EE from T-Mobile on renewal if I decide to stay with them and tbh that is fine by me. Makes far more sense to deal direct with EE than be bounced around the other two brands. Its is bad enough dealing with non EE brands without them squabbling over my account as well.
 
They insist on calling themselves E E rather than EE which I am pretty sure will become the defactor reference. After all 4GEE is not 4G E  E Odd really.

I really want to upgrade my Lumia 800 to the 920 but I am on o2 and have been for over a decade. I don't intend to switch to EE. I really hope the exclusivity is only a short term thing. If not I will have to look at the Samsung or even worse an Android handset. I think Nokia are going to limit themselves quite harmfully by being exclusive to EE. I do understand its about the LTE connectivity but its such a small rollout, it doesnt seem like a good idea to limit sales to one network and a few cities across the country. This will hinder rather than boost sales.