O2 refarms spectrum for 3G


Move by the operator to reuse 900MHz frequency for 3G in London is first by UK networks

O2 has switched on its new “superfast” 3G network across London after being granted permission by Ofcom in January to reuse its 900MHZ spectrum for such services.

It is the first operator in the UK to make such a move.

Previously only licensed to distribute 2G services the 900MHz spectrum band offers the capability to significantly improve the potential of 3G services according to O2.

O2 chief technology officer Nigel Purdy said: “ This 3G900 switch-on is the latest in a series of network enhancements for O2, and is a first for the UK and [O2 parent company] Telefonica.

“We’ve acted quickly to bring the benefits of 3G over 900MHz spectrum to our customers and we’re thrilled with the results.”

Meanwhile the results of a survey compiled by network specialist SIRODA has revealed O2 to offer the fastest data speeds compared to its four main rivals.

The tests, across 169 static test locations carried out between October 2010 and January this year revealed O2 as the ‘winner’ in 12 out of 13 UK cities.

SIRODA said, on average web page access on the O2 network was delivered in 1.4 seconds – three times quicker than the slowest operator.

Data performance was measured by testing the time to access a webpage and the speed of downloading a typical music file.