Three UK adds one million users, says 4G 'won't be a game changer'

Three UK adds one million customers, says 4G 'won't be a game changer'
Three and easy as network pulls in the punters

Mobile operator Three UK has laid claim to the title of the 'UK's fastest growing network', adding over one million customers in the last year.

The company says it added 300,000 new users in the last three months alone, which is in keeping with its yearly growth of 1.04 million customers and brings its overall user base to 8.8 million.

With growth like that it's little wonder that Three UK CEO David Dyson isn't panicking about the onset of 4G LTE connectivity and the head start gained by 4GEE.

Dyson said the speeds offered by EE's limited 4G LTE service won't be extraordinarily different to the latest DC-HSPA 3G speeds his company is rolling out across the UK.

"I don't think 4G as a mass-market proposition is necessarily going to be a game changer, when you compare it against the latest generation of 3G," Dyson told ZDnet in an interview.

"So I don't think there is an immediate need to accelerate any sort of technologic upgrade to LTE in time scales, which would be inconsistent with when we expect to get that 1800MHz spectrum."

Not asleep at the wheel

However, that doesn't mean Three is asleep at the wheel when it comes to 4G. Back in August the company bought up a slice of the 1800MHz spectrum EE converted from 2G to 4G.

Three will look to start offering those LTE speeds at the back end of 2013 when EE hands over the spectrum, while its also likely to be involved in the Ofcom 4G auction scheduled for early next year.

"If we hadn't got that spectrum, we'd have been going into the auction a bit blind in terms of what the outcome would be," Dyson added.

"Because we are now assured that we will get the 1800MHz, we can start to develop our rollout plans around a specific frequency, which means we're getting ahead of the game now."

Via ZDnet, Guardian

Chris Smith

A technology journalist, writer and videographer of many magazines and websites including T3, Gadget Magazine and He specializes in applications for smartphones, tablets and handheld devices, with bylines also at The Guardian, WIRED, Trusted Reviews and Wareable. Chris is also the podcast host for The Liverpool Way. As well as tech and football, Chris is a pop-punk fan and enjoys the art of wrasslin'.