EE will launch a trial 5G network in the UK in October, albeit on a limited scale.
The mobile operator said it will switch on 10 sites in East London, enabling five homes and five small businesses to connect to 5G using prototype broadband devices.
It aims to realise speeds in excess of 1Gbps over a live network in this first 5G trial, it said.
“This live trial is a big step forward in making the benefits of 5G a reality for our customers, and in making sure that the UK is at the front of the pack for 5G technology,” said Marc Allera, CEO of EE parent BT’s Consumer business, in a statement.
“5G is a fundamental part of our work to build a converged, smart network that keeps our customers connected to the things that matter most,” he added.
EE said it expects 5G to deliver more reliable and responsive mobile Internet connections which will underpin the use of technologies such as virtual and augmented reality in mobile applications and services.
“Together with the government’s own test beds and trials programme, industry initiatives like this will help deliver the benefits of this new revolutionary technology to businesses and consumers across the UK,” said UK minister for digital Margot James.
EE aims to be the first telco in the UK to launch 5G services, having been first to market with 4G in October 2012.