Senior Three tech exec Phil Sheppard departs ahead of UK 5G launch

(Image credit: Three)

Three has confirmed its director of strategy and architecture Phil Sheppard has left the company.

Sheppard joined Three from BT back in 2000 and was present for the operator’s launch of 3G, 4G and 5G Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) broadband.

He assumed greater responsibility for Three’s technology strategy following the departure of former CTO Bryn Jones back in 2018. Sheppard’s own resignation comes at a critical time for Three, which still hasn’t launched its 5G mobile service in the UK, although it plans to go live early in 2020.

Three Phil Sheppard

The operator said it would announce Sheppard’s replacement in “due course”.

“We can confirm that Phil Sheppard left Three at the end of 2019. After 19 years, he has decided to pursue new challenges,” said a Three spokesperson. “We’d like to thank him for his contribution to Three and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.

“We are in the process of a wholesale transformation of Three’s network and IT systems in order to create a truly digital telco of the future. Our employee structure continues to change and evolve to support this ambition.”

As for Sheppard, he said he plans to do some consultancy work and take some time off.

“It’s been a fantastic 19 years,” he said in a LinkedIn post. “When I joined Three in November 2000 mobile was using 2G technology and I have had the privilege of being at the centre of 3G, 4G and 5G launches.  Thank you to all the wonderful people I have worked with both at Three and in partners."

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.