O2 has revealed that its 4G trials in central London have managed speeds equal to those of the speediest home broadband connections. 4G download speeds reach 150Mbps, equal to the speediest home broadband setups.
The operator revealed details about the trial, which began in December 2011, on the day that the UK's digital switchover finished (18 April). O2 claimed that download speeds of 159Mbps had been achieved, and that many of the 1,000 people involved in the trial had seen speeds hit anywhere between 20 and 50 Mbps - that's equal to about 20 times the speed of 3G rates.
O2 believes that 3G will be the start of a revolution in cloud-based offerings, as 40MB files can be downloaded in seconds while users are out and about. Trial members have been downloading as much as 200GB a month using either a personal MiFi hotspot or a Samsung dongle. It also said that the trial showed that there is a real demand for 4G services and that it would be rolling them out in 2013, after the 4G auction.
Ronan Dunne, CEO of O2, said that the upcoming 4G auction would be a ‘watershed moment' in the history of the UK's mobile industry and would allow the operator to ‘deliver true connectivity through a suite of innovative digital services, that work seamlessly and at speed for the benefit of consumers, business and UK plc'.
The O2 trial has been conducted at 25 sites in the capital, in an area measuring 40 sq km from Canary Wharf to Hyde Park. A total of 1,000 consumers and businesses took part in O2's trial.