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EE on track to sign up a million 4G customers by Christmas

Press release   •   Apr 23, 2013 15:58 BST

UK mobile phone network EE has said that 318,000 people have signed up to its fourth generation (4G) service.

EE - which operates the Orange and T-Mobile brands in the UK - announced revenues of £1.4 billion, adding it was on track to sign up a million 4G customers by Christmas, in an early start to 4G that was described as "respectable, if not earth shattering" by analysts.

The figure represents only 1.2% of EE's 26.4 million users, suggesting that the firm's head start against its rivals in the UK has not proved overly successful.

EE launched its 4G service in October last year, the first UK network to do so, as it was able to use some of its existing frequency spectrums.

EE has signed up more than 1,600 medium and large companies to its 4G network, too, and continues to roll out infrastructure to more areas of the UK as it looks to capitalise on the head-start it gained while rivals, Three, Vodafone and O2, had to wait for the 4G auction.

EE, which holds a 36 per cent share of UK mobile spectrum, had said that about 10 per cent of its corporate customers were trialling or using 4G including Microsoft, Morrisons and Gatwick Airport.

"93% of new and renewing post-paid handset connections are smartphones, of which 42% are 4G or 4G-ready. And data revenue continues to increase accordingly, with non-messaging data revenue up 9%," the company said.

"The strong take-up of 4G services among new and existing customers validates our data monetisation strategy," EE added, answering to criticism that its data policies are too tight and monthly plans too expensive.

Turnover at EE in the first three months of 2013 totalled £1.67 billion, down 3.9% from £1.61 billion a year earlier.

The company charges more for 4G than 3G. However, in January it reduced the price of its 4G offering as it sought to boost take-up numbers.

For more information on the 4G network market, see the latest research: 4G Network Market

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