blackpool beach uk holiday

EE boosts 4G and 5G network capacity ahead of rise in ‘staycations’

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EE has boosted the capacity of its mobile networks in some of the UK’s most popular coastal locations, in anticipation of a larger than normal number of holidaymakers.

With the Covid-19 pandemic still ongoing, and travel restrictions imposed on most countries, 2021 is expected to see an unprecedented number of people staying in the UK for their holiday.

EE has said it will upgrades its 4G network and rollout its 5G network in several coastal towns and cities to boost coverage and increase speeds in high-demand areas. Mobile users should also have better signal to make calls from these locations and faster data speeds to access the internet and apps.

The 4G network will be upgraded in 16 locations including Blackpool, Bournemouth and Brighton, while the latter two will also see a 5G rollout alongside Swansea and some other locations.

The enhanced 4G coverage also forms an integral part of Britain’s much-delayed Emergency Services Network (ESN), which is already providing critical communications for some first responder and emergency agencies.

Marc Allera, CEO Consumer Division, BT, said: “With many popular seaside locations expecting a busy summer, we’re pleased to be providing improved coastal connectivity.

“The upgrades to our network will help ensure our customers stay connected this summer, even at the busiest times. The additional capacity delivered through improvements to our 4G network, alongside the continued roll-out of our 5G network, will help people make the most of their time at the coast, and also provide a valuable lifeline, if an emergency occurs.”

Gareth Morrison, RNLI Head of Water Safety, said: “We do expect coastal areas to be very busy this summer, but if people follow key safety advice, they can stay safe and enjoy their time at the beach and along our coastlines.

“Alongside our lifeboat crew and lifeguards, mobile phones can help people stay safe when at the coast, so improvements to coastal coverage is welcomed. Smartphones can help people plan their day at the coast and check things like the weather, tide times and where our lifeguards are patrolling. Mobiles also allow people to call for help quickly in an emergency situation.

“Whether you’re walking along the coast, angling from rocks, or relaxing on the beach, having the means to call for help in an emergency can be the difference between life and death.”

EE first switched on its 5G network in May 2019 and has been steadily expanding it since then.

It anticipates that it will introduce its “full next-generation 5G core network” next year, which includes enhanced device chipset capabilities, and increased availability of 5G-ready spectrum. From 2023, it will add Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communications, Network Slicing and multi-gigabit-per-second speeds to the infrastructure.

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