Vodafone gearing up for 4G launch

Vodafone gearing up for 4G launch

Vodafone appears to be adding the final touches to the launch of its new 4G service which, along with fellow rival O2, will be directly competing with EE in a battle for supremacy.

EE's willingness to set up its network first, means that it has enjoyed somewhat of a monopoly on the market of late, but that could change as early as this August, with Vodafone poised stake its claim in the UK's 4G market.

The company, which has been talking up its intentions for setting up a 4G network for a long time, clearly has big ambitions for the venture, having spent around £790 million during Ofcom's 4G spectrum auction earlier this year.

The firm also wants to ensure that it can provide the best possible coverage to customers living in both densely populated inner-city areas, as well as more remote countryside locations.

It also says that its network will be stronger and more reliable "in the places you want to use it most", something that has helped the company to ruffle a few feathers within the industry.

Indeed the lines have already been seemingly drawn in the sand, with EE recently expressing its unhappiness about Vodafone's decision to sponsor Formula One cars driven by Jenson Button and Sergio Perez with the slogan 'Ultrafast 4G'.

EE has since launched a complaint, claiming that the premise behind the message is misleading.

A spokesman for EE told The Guardian newspaper earlier this month: "Vodafone insist on advertising on the side of a car a product they do not sell and have offered no clear timings on when they will sell in the UK.

"They compound this with unsubstantiated claims about an 'ultrafast' network. These misleading ads will not only confuse their own customers but consumers in this country as a whole. For these reasons we are seriously considering bringing this matter to the attention of the Advertising Standards Authority."

Vodafone has disagreed, claiming that the message, along with adverts on taxi cabs in and around the city of London, are simply to remind consumers of the impending launch of the service, which now looks set to come before the end of the summer.

The carrier's 4G offering will initially be launched on a city by city basis, although it has so far offered no hints as to which ones will be made available first.