UK mobile users given LTE dongles to play with

Customers of O2 use LTE-enabled USB plug-in devices to test out mobile operator's high-speed network

Tags: United Kingdom
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UK mobile users given LTE dongles to play with Huawei has teamed up with Telefonica subsidiary O2 for the trial. (Image for illustration only)
By Staff Writer Published  December 28, 2009

A select band of UK mobile users have been given LTE-enabled USB plug-in devices to test out mobile operators O2's new high-speed mobile network.

"We are pleased to collaborate with Huawei [which made the dongle] on this LTE trial," Derek McManus, chief technology officer at O2, told UK newspaper the Telegraph last week. "It will allow us to better understand this emerging technology and prepare us in offering our customers next-generation mobile broadband services in the future."

"Mobile operators are struggling to cope with the huge demand for data services," added Tim Watkins, a vice president at Huawei. "LTE technology will be able to handle up to 20 times as much data and allow more bandwidth-hungry applications."

Telefonica subsidiary O2 will be keen to investigate a solution capable of delivering greater bandwidth following problems with its current network.

Chief executive Ronan Dunne yesterday apologised for the network congestion that has left some of its subscribers unable to use the data functionality on their mobile devices.

He told the Financial Times that O2's network difficulties had been caused by an "explosion" of demand for data services on smartphones but said the problems were largely confined to London.

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