It was rumoured that Three was going to buy a chunk of that sweet, newly 4G-enabled 1800MHz spectrum off Everything Everywhere, and now it's been confirmed. Three now has the ability to roll out 4G LTE this year, just like Everything Everywhere.
Three has yet to comment on when it'll actually launch its 4G network, but now it's got a chunk of spectrum -- two 15MHz bits of the 1800MHz band to be precise -- to play with, I should think it'll be all hands to the pumps to get it up and running as soon as possible.
We already know that Everything Everywhere, having been forced by Ofcom to sell this now-valuable piece of spectrum, doesn't actually have to clear the airwaves until sometime in October, so Three will have to wait at least for that to happen. Three's CEO, Dave Dyson, told TechRadar that it the added bands will double the network's capacity, which is a damn good thing considering Three's been struggling with oversubscribed areas of late.
In just one day, we've gone from having nothing from 4G until early next year at the earliest, to having two networks now capable of rolling out LTE any minute now. Finally, Britain's got its arse in gear for the future of mobile broadband and I just can't wait to taste the blazing speeds of superfast, fibre-like speeds without wires. [TechRadar]
Update: It seems Everything Everywhere has pretty much screwed Three's chances of getting a leg up on the old race to 4G. It's slapped a condition on the sale meaning that EE won't clear the airwaves until September. 2013. Talk about authoritarian. Then again, I can't blame EE -- if you could secure a total monopoly on an early 4G network, you'd do everything you could to do make it happen. Looks like we're stuck with just Orange, T-Mobile or whatever they want to call it.
Image credit: Mobile mast from Shutterstock.