Vodafone said it would have 1,000 5G-enabled network sites in Britain by 2020, delivering blisteringly fast speeds and near-instant response times that it demonstrated by making Britain’s first holographic mobile call on Thursday.
The mobile phone company, which will start trials of 5G technology in seven British cities in the coming weeks, said Cornwall in southwest England and the Lake District national park in the northwest – two regions poorly served by existing coverage – would receive 5G during 2019.
All four of Britain’s networks are kicking off trials of 5G services, although consumers will not be able to make calls until 5G-ready handsets start to arrive next year.
Vodafone UK’s chief technology officer Scott Petty said 5G technology would ultimately enable speeds of 1 gigabit per second, opening up a plethora of opportunities for ultra-high definition content and immersive services.
And importantly, the technology has near instant response times, eliminating the lag that for example causes motion sickness in users of virtual reality headsets.
Vodafone’s incoming CEO Nick Read said at a conference last week that Vodafone could sell some network assets such as towers, but its UK boss Nick Jeffery said that would not happen in Britain.