Telecoms regulator Ofcom has allowed Everything Everywhere, the company behind Orange and T-Mobile in the UK, to use its existing bandwidth to launch fourth-generation (4G) mobile services.
The move means 4G, which allows much faster downloads, could launch in the UK earlier than previously planned. Ofcom said the move would deliver "significant benefits" to consumers that outweigh any competition concerns.
But Vodafone and O2 expressed surprise and disappointment at the decision. Ofcom plans to auction 4G bandwidth to other providers next year.
Everything Everywhere will be allowed to offer 4G services from 11 September. But, as the regulator pointed out, the timing will be a commercial decision for the company itself. The operator has been trialling 4G services at a number of local businesses in Cumbria in the north of England since the end of June.
Ofcom said delaying the mobile operator from launching 4G would be "to the detriment of consumers". Everything Everywhere itself said the regulator's decision was "great news for the UK".
Source: BBC News