iPhone 5 – 4G capability will only work on EE in the UK

Orange and T-Mobile, in the shape of “EE”, grabbed headlines earlier this week by rolling out UK’s first 4G service. That left Vodafone and O2 green with envy, waiting for a slice of the 4G pie through the auctions.

O2 are now pushing hard to get their 4G network running “as quickly as possible” and are particularly interested in accelerating the process. Why? It’s partially due to the new iPhone 5. It supports 4G, but only at 1800MHz, 2100Mhz and 850Mhz. The 850Mhz band doesn’t work here in the UK, 1800Mhz is the band EE will use and 2100Mhz is currently crammed full of 3G-ness.

New 4G frequencies will be available shortly, with O2 and Vodafone champing at the bit to use, but the bands available will be 800Mhz and 2600Mhz. The iPhone 5 doesn’t support them, and this gives EE an even greater chance in the marketplace.

As part of the 4G agreement EE have given some of their 1800Mhz spectrum to Three, and they’re planning a September 2013 launch of their 4G network. So, if you’re set on getting an iPhone 5 and you absolutely need to have the 4G capability working, it’ll only work on EE until Three start rolling out their network next year. However, by the time 4G is commonplace we’re guessing that the iPhone 6 or iPhone 7 will be available and it’ll support more bands.

Link – BBC