Vodafone 4G could launch the same week as O2 4G and will announce it plans later this week, a report has claimed
Vodafone 4G could launch in the same week as the rival O2 4G service, which is due to go live on 29 August in London, Leeds and Bradford.
A report in The Times claims Vodafone will reveal details about its 4G offering later this week and speculates it could beat O2 to market.
The company told TechWeekEurope that it had not made any announcement regarding details of its 4G plans.
Vodafone 4G plans
Vodafone has been vague about a specific launch date for its LTE service, promising only that it will launch “this summer.” It won £790 million worth of 800MHz and 2.6GHz spectrum in the Ofcom 4G auction earlier this year, of which the latter band was only cleared of digital transmissions late last month.
The operator is investing £900 million on its 4G network, and believes its pledge to let customers with non-compatible smartphones upgrade early by paying 30 percent of the charges remaining on their existing contract has been key in minimising defections to EE 4G, which launched last November and is the UK’s only current LTE operator.
Voadafone has also launched a range of ‘4G-ready’ smartphones that will be able to use the service as soon as it’s switched on, but it has been suggested the launch of Vodafone 4G is being held back until Apple announces a new iPhone.
The iPhone 5 is only compatible with EE 4G, which uses the 1800MHz band. A new model is sould presumably work on 800MHz and 2.6GHz, which would be likely to trigger a number of new 4G subscriptions.
The Times adds Vodafone intends on charging a premium for 4G, just like O2 and EE, and that it has no interest in initiating a price war with its competitors. In contrast, Three, which plans to launch LTE later this year, says it will not charge its subscribers any extra.
There are currently 687,000 subscribers to the EE 4G service, with the company targeting one million LTE customers by the end of the year.
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