Industry greets Everything Everywhere's 4G strategy
Everything Everywhere's plan to roll out super-fast 4G mobile broadband to a third of the UK population this year has been widely praised by the industry.
By Christmas, the network operator's 4G coverage is set to reach 20 million consumers in 16 cities - including Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff and London.
The company's nationwide 4G deployment will continue throughout 2013, reaching 98 per cent of the population in 2014.
Several analysts predicted the move will catapult the UK into the big leagues when it comes to mobile connectivity.
Milan Sallaba, partner and head of strategy advisory TMT at KPMG, said the long-awaited launch of 4G will put the country "back on the map as a technology leader in mobile", alongside the likes of Germany and the US.
Ovum's regulatory telecoms practice leader Matthew Howett said until now, Britain has been "lamented" for its place in the mobile slow lane, behind Angola, Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan.
However, he insisted this now looks set to change and said Everything Everywhere's plan to cover the whole of London from launch makes the project "one of the most ambitious rollouts we have seen".
Kester Mann, senior analyst for operators at CCS Insight, described the deployment timetable as "undoubtedly ambitious".
"[Everything Everywhere] should be congratulated for taking the risks to invest strongly in network rollout before receiving authorisation from Ofcom," he added.