Mobile giant plans for £1.5bn 4G investment

THE owner of mobile phone networks Orange and T-Mobile yesterday pledged to spend more than £1.5 billion over the next three years to bring faster and more reliable coverage to its customers.

Everything Everywhere, which has 27 million customers in the UK, will introduce broadband-speed 4G technology for mobile phones, replacing the current 3G network.

4G allows users to download music and films to their phones at the same speed as their home or office computers.

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The company, formed in 2010 by the merger of Orange and T-Mobile, has run successful trials of the new technology in and around St Newlyn East in Cornwall and will bid for 4G coverage at auctions later this year.

Everything Everywhere posted a 2 per cent increase in underlying profits to £1.4bn as customers switched to higher-revenue contract deals and demand grew for smartphones, such as Apple’s iPhone and HTC and Samsung’s Android models.

Chief executive Olaf Swantee side-stepped questions over whether Deutsche Telekom – which owns half of the company – could sell its stake or list it on the stock market. France Telecom owns the other half of Everything Everywhere.