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What is 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband?

What is 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband? 

Latest news for 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband4G fixed wireless broadband is similar to wireless broadband in that it delivers a broadband service to your home or business through the airwaves but on a 4G mobile broadband signal instead of the frequencies used by wireless broadband ISPs.

In a sense, 4G fixed wireless broadband is an extension of 4G mobiel broadband, except unlike a dongle or MiFi, you get a stationary router in the home connected to a transmitter normally mounted on the roof of your home and business. 

A snapshot of EE’s 4G rollout to date: 98 per cent of the UK will be covered by the end of 2014

Despite the 4G spectrum auction having concluded and all of the UK’s major network operators unveilig their 4G plans, there aren’t many 4G fixed wireless broadband products on the market just yet.

Where will I be able to get 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband? 

Initially EE’s 4G will only be available in London, Bristol, Cardiff, Birmingham, Leeds, Sheffield, Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Belfast, Southampton, Hull, Nottingham and Derby. Eventually 4G will roll out to the majority of the UK once theses areas have been covered. 

Pending EE’s announcement on 4G Fixed Location Broadband we won’t know for sure where its services will be available. 

As 4G fixed location broadband is mainly of interest for rural broadband customers we’ll expect to hear more once concrete dates for rollout have been announced. 

By 2015, the government wants all of the UK networks to have rolled out 4G coverage to 98 per cent of the UK population and has set up the Mobile Infrastructure Plan, a £150 million fund, to help facilitate this.

Who will be offering 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband? 

At the moment we’ve only heard of EE and Now Broadband offering this service. There’s no reason however why O2, Vodafone and Three wouldn’t launch fixed location services in the future. 

The same goes for Vodafone and Three who may offer fixed location 4G along with mobile 4G contracts once the Ofcom auction has taken place. 

Won’t 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband interfere with Freeview? 

Not necessarily – EE’s 4G uses the 1800MHz frequency band of the spectrum which will not interfere with Freeview, which broadcasts on the 800MHz frequency. 

O2 and Vodafone 800MHz 4G licences which could potentially interfere with Freeview transmissions. Read our feature on the 4G Freeview Fail for more information on this. 

Latest news for 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband

Now Broadband launches 4G broadband in Reading and Southwark

Now Broadband has launched 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband services in Reading and Southwark, London.

Download speeds of up to 40Mbps and uploads of up to 5Mbps are promised across packages which start at £21.50/month.

All our packages offer the same speeds of up to 40Mbps download and 5Mbps upload on average, though they may vary depending on where you live and how many people could be accessing the 4G network.

What’s happening with 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband?

Details on the packages are a little thin on the ground right now but we understand that where unlimited downloads would be offered, there will be a fair use policy in place. The Advance package prioritises traffic so that heavy users – gamers or those working from home, for example – can continue to benefit from the best speeds, even during peak times.

If you go for a 24 month option, the installation fee is waived. If you go for a 12 month deal, there’s a £30 one off fee which climbs to £60.

Now Broadband 4G Fixed Wireless Broadband – No wires, no line rental

As Now Broadband’s packages are wireless, there’s no additional fee to pay for line rental, so there’s a potential cost saver right there and installation should be less of a hassle.

With all Now Broadband deals you get a Huawei-made 4G nowBox wireless router thrown in which connects to UK Broadband’s 4G LTE network.

This is separate to Everything Everywhere’s network and operates on a difference frequency, meaning if you mate comes round with his new iPhone 5 on EE, there shouldn’t be interference.

Now Broadband also uses Time-Division Duplex (TDD) for its services – technology which can dynamically alter download and uplink speeds to suit what you’re doing – which a spokesperson tells us is more suitable for fixed location broadband use.

If you live in Reading or Southwark you can sign up for Now Broadband today – head over to their site and use the postcode checker to see if you’re covered.

October 5, 2012

Virgin Media Business trials 4G mobile broadband in Newcastle and Bristol

Virgin Media Business has completed a successful trial of 4G mobile broadband in Newcastle and Bristol.

Top download speeds achieved clocked in at 90Mbps, which Virgin Media Business touts as being ‘three times faster’ than top speeds available via 3G mobile broadband.

The trials showcases that the 4G signal is strong enough to reach into buildings without interrupting user experience, meaning that in areas where fibre can’t easily reach, 4G broadband is a viable alternative for the short-to-mid term.

Virgin Media Business 4G trials 90Mbps speeds

Virgin Media, which runs a virtual mobile network, has access to parts of Everything Everywhere’s 1800MHz spectrum, meaning it could use this to launch 4G mobile services as well as fixed-location 4G broadband.

Using the 1800MHz spectrum to bring 4G broadband into homes would be a smart move as it doesn’t affect the Freeview broadcast signals of subscribers. Of course Virgin Media would like people to sign up for their TV packages, but if you can get Virgin Media cable TV, it’d follow that you’d want Virgin Media cable broadband too…

Everything Everywhere has told Recombu Digital that under strict lab conditions, its 4G broadband speeds can provide speeds as fast as 100Mbps downstream. However that’s in lab conditions without hundreds of people using the network. It’s therefore likely that should 4G fixed location broadband get released by Virgin Media, we should expect the average speeds to be bit below 90Mbps in everyday scenarios.

September 26, 2012

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