Vodafone UK began the roll-out of a new technology which will help boost customers’ existing 4G mobile service by allowing more users to experience ultra-fast speeds this week (15 October 2014).
The new technology, called carrier aggregation but also referred to as LTE Advanced or 4.5G, allows Vodafone to combine its portfolio of radio spectrum to provide higher average speeds to more simultaneous users, including indoors where 70% of customers use their mobile device most.
Vodafone is rolling out the enhanced technology from this month in Birmingham, Manchester and London and to other UK cities during the rest of this year and 2015.
Carrier aggregation is particularly well suited to Vodafone’s 800MHz and 2.6GHz spectrum, which the company secured in last year’s 4G auction. Low frequency 800MHz spectrum travels further and penetrates better through walls to provide the best network coverage. 2.6GHz is ideally suited to smaller geographical areas of high population density.
Vodafone research shows that customers value a consistent, high-speed 4G service in-building as well as outside and that they are increasingly streaming videos, emailing, accessing the web, as well as making and receiving calls from lunchtime through to early evening from their desk or sofa.
Vodafone UK technology director, Fergal Kelly, said: “This clever technology is the next big step to deliver faster speeds per user and to increase the capacity so more customers can enjoy a great 4G experience when and where they want it.”
The rollout of carrier aggregation is part of £1 billion Vodafone is spending on its network and services across the UK this year. It follows the nationwide provision of HD (High Definition) voice technology and the Vodafone Rural Open Sure Signal programme aimed at giving remote communities 3G coverage for the first time.