O2 begins London 4G trial


Trial will see O2 provide 4G technology to 1,000 individuals across London until June 2012

O2 has begun a 4G LTE trial in London, which will see the technology made available at over 25 sites across the capital. It is the first such trial to take place in the capital according to O2.

The trial will use the 2.6GHz spectrum band under a test and development licence granted to O2 by Ofcom and is an extension of O2’s LTE trials which have been running at its headquarters in Slough since 2009.

The trial which will run until June 2012, will see over 1,000 individuals from a range of different companies will test the technology, which offers speeds of up to 150 MB per second on the spectrum used.

Customers will use Samsung’s B3730 mobile 4G broadband dongles and a number of 4G handsets from other manufacturers, yet to be named by O2.

Companies involved in the trial include retailer and O2 corporate client John Lewis, the Institution of Engineering and Technology and The O2 arena.

The rollout which covers 40 square kilometres including key areas such as Soho, Westminster, South Bank, Canary Wharf and Kings Cross.

O2 CEO Ronan Dunne said: “O2 has been at the heart of the mobile data explosion over the last three years and our priority has always been to build ahead of the curve.

“Our work in London will give us a better understanding of the capabilities of 4G technology and will allow us to explore the super fast benefits it will bring to people and industry across the UK.

“This 4G trial is the next step on our journey to a smarter network – a network that offers a seamless, connected experience across multiple devices, locations and services.

Dunne said the scheme was rolled out in conjunction with Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) which provided both radio and core network elements. and

Microwave radio equipment has been supplied by Cambridge Broadband Networks Limited, NEC and NSN.