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Mobile operators are going Superfast on 5G bandwidth.

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Vodafone, EE, O2 all won the bandwidth needed for the future 5G mobile internet services, which are not expected to be launched until 2020. Telefónica, which owns O2, also bought additional frequency for its 4G coverage, which will improve existing connectivity for customers. It is expected that 5G will provide much faster connections than the existing system.

What is 5G?

5G will vastly improve data speeds on mobile devices and will help free up much-needed bandwidth. It could also help driverless cars to communicate with traffic lights and other vehicles to anticipate traffic conditions and avoid collisions.

When will I be able to get it?

5G is not expected to roll out widely to mobiles before 2020, but there will be plenty of testing before that, including at tourist hotspots in Bristol and Bath.

What happens next?

In the second half of 2019, Ofcom will also auction spectrum in the 700MHz band, but this will come with a caveat: the need to improve 4G coverage first.

“To ensure widespread improvements in mobile coverage across the UK, we are proposing to attach coverage obligations to some of the licences we will award for the 700 MHz band,” Ofcom said.

“These obligations will require winning bidders to roll out improved mobile coverage in rural areas and the nations.”

 

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