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EE turns on the UK's first LTE network

EE turns on the UK's first LTE network

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UK carrier Everything Everywhere is flipping the switch today on the country’s first LTE service, bringing high-speed mobile broadband to 11 cities (Southampton is going live a little early), with five more coming by the holidays. And it isn't stopping there. EE says it will be adding about 2,000 square miles (or two million people) per month, eventually covering 98 percent of the country by the end of 2014.

'Fastest rollout of any UK network'

For those looking to take advantage of the faster speeds, six compatible phones went on sale earlier this month at Orange and T-Mobile stores: the Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S III LTE, Nokia Lumia 920 and 820, HTC One XL, and Huawei Ascend P1 LTE. The company also announced that it would be carrying the iPad mini earlier this week, but added the caveat that LTE availability is only available through select carriers.

Data plans for the new "4GEE" service start at 500MB for £36 a month and scale up to 8GB for £56. You will also get to download or stream one film per week from the company's new EE Film service without cutting into that allowance. And as far as speed goes, EE is claiming averages of 8–12Mbps — "five times" faster than the country's existing 3G service.