4G in UK poised to break the 20% barrier

Two years and three weeks ago, 30th October 2012 to be precise, EE switched on its 4G network, offering service in eleven cities around UK.

Other operators (Vodafone, o2 and 3) were allowed to offer their own 4G services from May-2013 onwards. 4G’s share of wireless connections has been grown ever since and is now poised to break the 20% barrier. Quantum-Web predicts that this milestone will be reached in Q1 2015 (Figure 1).

4G in UK has reached 20% uptake much more quickly than 3G. Where it took 3G 4½ years to reach 20%, 4G in UK will hit that important milestone in 2¼ years. High smartphone uptake and consumer lifestyles that demand ubiquitous and instantaneous data access have contributed to the accelerated uptake of 4G technology.

The possibilities and benefits of on-the-go video, mobile retailing and social media all help position smartphones as essential to consumers’ lives, more so than even wallets or house keys according to some surveys. Which means it’s no surprise that operators see potential for premium pricing. However, the experience must reflect the promise and consumers need to be sure that if they pay a premium for 4G services then they actually get a 4G service.

Figure 1: UK Wireless Technology Trend (2002-2018)
4G Trend UK


Quantum Web’s extensive portfolio of analysis also includes detailed information for both wireless and wireline broadband tariffs of 541 major operators in 138 countries.

The tariffs are analysed according to the following parameters:
• Download and upload speed
• Recurring and non recurring costs
• Throttling or overage details
• Type of device
• Bundling characteristics

There is a comparison of broadband pricing strategies for each operator in the tariffs monitoring service on the basis of the following perspectives:
• Fixed broadband tariffs by speed
• Fixed broadband tariffs analysis by access technology
• Fixed broadband tariffs analysis for stand-alone vs. bundled services
• Wireless broadband tariffs analysis of 2G, 3G and 4G
• Wireless broadband tariffs analysis of 2G, 3G and 4G cost per GB