O2 has given Londoners a boost for 3G data by enabling its 3G network on the 900MHz frequency previously available only to 2G users.
Following changes to the 3G licenses by Ofcom in January, O2 has taken no time to start rolling out 3G coverage using the 900MHz spectrum. Starting with key cities including Leeds, Birmingham and Manchester, London has now been added to a list that will grow throughout the UK in the coming year.
The 3G900 network layer will give a 50% increase in network capacity and is already showing 30% faster downloads in tests carried out by the network.
At a lower frequency, 900MHz signals can penetrate buildings easier than the high-frequencies currently used by other 3G networks operating at 2,100MHz. This should have a marked benefit to the coverage offered in and around the capital.
O2 is the first UK operator to take advantage of the amended network licence. Users will need a 900MHz compatible device, including the iPhone 4, iPad 2 and other 3G handsets that support the 900MHz frequency.