Tech/games journalist with 10 years of experience.
Three UK has announced its plans to use London's West End as a test zone for its 5G network. In conjunction with SSE Enterprise Telecoms, the two companies will run the fibre test bed as part of their ongoing connectivity collaboration programme, potentially leading to better service for customers.
The West End has been chosen specifically because it's one of the most populated and highly visited regions in the city, thanks to being home to Oxford Street, Europe's busiest retail road. With tens of millions of monthly visitors, it's the ideal place to rollout Three UK's plans to serve businesses and consumers alike with the fastest 5G network yet seen.
The project aims to allow Three UK to add extra capacity to its 4G and 5G networks, providing its customers with a faster and more reliable experience, even in heavily populated areas like the West End.
SSE Enterprise Telecoms is on track to deliver 50% of the underlying network which will help strengthen Three UK's existing 4G network, as well as rollout the fastest 5G network in this area of the UK.
"In order to retain its global status, the international centre must have the infrastructure and connectivity to support its businesses and the 200 million annual visitors to the area who expect it to be fully digitally equipped," explained Jace Tyrrell, Chief Executive of New West End Company, which represents 600 businesses in London's West End.
High capacity fibre
High capacity fibre is vital in the deployment of 5G with SSE Enterprise Telecoms already demonstrating its commitment last year through its Edge 3 programme. The programme will see the company unbundle 177 BT exchanges by 2020, allowing the firm to deploy its own technology on BT's infrastructure, thereby adding over 180,000 UK business post codes to its network reach.
SSE Enterprise Telecoms already provides class-leading connectivity and data centre services, operating a 12,000+km private telecoms network with an estate of 80 commercial data centres.
Combined with Three UK's plans to launch 5G based home broadband this August in London with 25 other towns and cities to follow by the end of the year, the two firms are in a strong position to offer faster and more effective 5G capabilities.
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