How the EE network got even faster

Last year EE, part of BT Group, is the largest and most advanced mobile communications company in the UK teamed up with Sony to achieve the UK’s fastest ever real world mobile download speeds.

Cardiff, London, became the first cities to benefit from increased the 4G network capacity when EE switched on a next generation 4G+ network upgrade. Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh followed soon after.

EE’s new 4G+ capability uses cutting edge technology to get even more capacity and faster speeds from existing spectrum resources. 

Optimised network performance

At an event in Cardiff city centre, EE demonstrated live download speeds of 429Mbps using Sony’s flagship Xperia XZ Premium smartphone.

Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium is the UK’s first ‘Cat 16’ smartphone optimised for the EE network and EE is the only mobile network able to support the new device’s unique upload and download capabilities. However, all devices on the EE network can benefit from the additional capacity and technology that EE is building into its network.

Peak speeds can be above 400Mbps with the right device, and customers connected to these sites should be able to consistently experience speeds above 50Mbps.

Marc Allera, CEO BT Consumer, said: “Sony has raised the bar in smartphone speeds, and we’re investing and innovating to match that and give our customers the fastest network speeds in the UK.”

He added: “What we demonstrated live in Cardiff is more than ten times the average mobile download speed. We’re rolling out this new capability to the busiest areas of the UK so that our customers always have a great connection to do the things they love.”

How the technology works

The sites that are capable of delivering these maximum speeds are equipped with 30MHz of 1800MHz spectrum, and 35MHz of 2.6GHz spectrum. The 1800MHz carriers are delivered using 4x4 MIMO, which sends and receives four signals instead of just two, making the spectrum up to twice as efficient. The sites also broadcast 4G using 256QAM, or Quadrature Amplitude Modulation, which increases the efficiency of the spectrum.

These two cutting edge technologies applied to EE’s award-winning 4G network help to further improve customer experience by increasing capacity, meaning faster speeds and a more reliable data experience.

EE runs the UK's biggest and fastest mobile network, having pioneered the UK's first superfast 4G mobile service in October 2012 and was the first European operator to surpass 14 million 4G customers in December 2015.

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