The days of having no signal at a festival are long since over, and EE's decided to take things a step further by bringing 5G to Glastonbury 2019 before most of the rest of the country has it.
The network will build five temporary 5G masts at the festival site in Pilton, Somerset, in addition to the 4G masts it built there two years back. While obviously not many festival-goers are likely to have a 5G phone by June, EE will be showing off what the network can do at its stand.
As in previous years, the EE staff at the festival will also offer phone charging tents and swappable power banks to keep revellers powered up.
The network says 50TB of data went through its 4G network at the last Glastonbury festival, in 2017 (2018 was a so-called 'fallow year,' where the festival skips a year to let the land and people have a break). This year, it's expecting at least 70TB.
Pete Jevons, marketing communications director at BT and EE, comments:
"Smartphones have become a festival must-have as we’ve seen each year with more and more data being consumed at Glastonbury Festival,” said Pete Jevons, marketing communications director at BT and EE.
As the long-standing technology partner to this iconic event, we are committed to building a network powerful enough to cope with this huge demand. With the introduction of 5G this year, we are able to trial this new technology at Worthy Farm and make history as the UK’s first 5G-connected festival."
And Emily Eavis of Worthy Farm, where the festival is held, adds:
"We’re extremely pleased to have EE back again, providing the best possible network for our rural site. And it’s great that we’re going to be one of the first places in the UK to offer 5G."
Surprisingly, the countryside seems to be doing better than the city at getting up to speed with 5G -- the Glastonbury announcement comes not long after the revelation that cows would have the super-fast network before most of us. [TechRadar]