Vodafone has just launched its 5G network, meaning you can now enjoy 5G speeds in parts of 7 UK cities.
The cities in question are Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Manchester, Liverpool and London, but as with EE - which already has a 5G network - coverage won’t initially be city-wide, but you’re likely to be able to get 5G speeds in the busiest areas.
Vodafone is also set to offer a 5G service in 20 European cities from the end of July, covering Italy, Spain and Germany, with more set to be offered once the relevant countries switch on 5G.
As well as switching 5G on, Vodafone has announced that you’ll be able to enjoy it with unlimited data, thanks to a new Unlimited Max plan which costs £30 per month. Vodafone didn’t previously offer unlimited data, so that’s big news in itself.
Of course, you’ll probably need a 5G phone to go with your plan, and on that front Vodafone currently offers the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G, and the 5G GigaCube (which is a router).
If you don’t need unlimited data you don’t have to pay the earth though, as Vodafone isn’t charging any more for its 5G plans than it does for 4G, which is another way in which the network could stand out.
Combined plans and growing coverage
From the end of July, Vodafone will also offer ‘Vodafone Together’ plans, combining 5G mobile and home broadband services, which sounds like it will kill BT’s claim of being the first to offer 5G as part of a converged mobile and broadband package.
Of course, if you don’t have coverage where you are then there’s no hurry to jump on board, but Vodafone’s 5G coverage looks set to expand quickly too, with the network promising to bring at least partial 5G coverage to Birkenhead, Blackpool, Bournemouth, Guildford, Newbury, Portsmouth, Plymouth, Reading, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Warrington and Wolverhampton by the end of the year, for 19 locations in total.
That could still leave it second to Three though, as while the latter network isn’t launching a 5G service until August, it has said it will expand coverage to 25 locations this year. And Vodafone will also face competition from O2, BT, Sky Mobile and Voxi, all of which also look set to launch 5G services before the end of 2019.