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Three bringing free 4G speed boosts to Belfast

Three is rolling out free 4G upgrades to Belfast customers later this month. 

Unlike rival networks which charge a premium to access next-gen services, Three customers with compatible phones, tablets and dongles will be able to tap into faster mobile broadband speeds for no extra cost. 

As well as bringing 4G to the capital, Three will be rolling out to other parts of the country including Londonderry next year. 

4G is heading to Belfast
Belfast City Hall basking in the sun: 4G services are heading to the city this November

Following £12.7 million of investment, Three has rolled out its services to 95 per cent of the population in Northern Ireland in the the last three years. Previously, Three was only available in 189 areas around the country, but now both voice calls and data can be used in 425 towns and villages. 

Bryn Jones, Three’s chief technology officer, said: “We have invested heavily in our network to provide exceptional coverage and a quality experience in Northern Ireland. Our customers will be able to enjoy better and faster mobile internet with the addition of new sites and the latest 3G technology. We will continue to invest in and improve the network to make sure customers get the best experience.”

The network has seen great benefits to expanding its operation in Northern Ireland, reporting a six-fold increase in data usage and and tripled call minutes.

Three expanded its benefits for Northern Irish customers last year, allowing residents in the country to use its network in neighbouring Ireland with its Feel at Home service.

Chris Lloyd, Three’s area manager for Northern Ireland, added: “With the massive expansion of network coverage we’ve seen sales rise by 28 per cent, and 84 per cent of our customers in 2014 have said they are likely to recommend us to friends and family.

“With our Feel at Home offer addressing the problems of inadvertent border roaming our Northern Ireland customers have made us the top performing region of the UK for growth.” 

All of the UK mobile networks are aiming to provide indoor 4G coverage to 98 per cent of the population by 2016. Right now EE has the largest 4G network, owing somewhat to the fast that it had a head start on Vodafone, O2 and Three. 

The UK Government’s MIP (Mobile Infrastructure Project) has released £150 million of funding to help networks acheive this. 

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