How we're building the UK's fastest network and why it will be the real deal
5G is coming and for the best 5G experience you’ll need an all-singing, all-dancing service. But how can you tell one from another?
Well, not only are we building the nation’s fastest network. But, we’re also the real deal when it comes to 5G. Pretty big claims, right? We can back them up, too. We’ve got four core reasons to show you just how quick our 5G will be. And when we talk real 5G, find out just what we mean.
- 1. More 5G spectrum than anyone else
Spectrum is the over-the-air bandwidth that mobile networks need to transmit data. And when it comes to 5G, there’s a lot of data. Thankfully, we’ve got more usable 5G spectrum than anyone else.
With 140MHz of 5G spectrum (and 100MHz of it contiguous), our service will be much faster and able to handle more data. This is something the other operators cannot currently do because they have at most 50MHz of 5G spectrum.
In fact, International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standards indicate that to deliver a 5G network, you may need to have a minimum of 100MHz of 5G spectrum. Right now, we’re the only UK mobile network to have over this amount.
- 2. The UK’s first mobile network Cloud-core
We’ve invested heavily in the UK’s first mobile network core that’ll be hosted using the Cloud. This means we’ll deliver a fully virtualised telco Cloud-core network that’s 5G ready and supported by our existing IT systems. What’s even better is that this is exclusive to us right now , and our Cloud-core network is already live. We’re migrating our customers onto it throughout 2019.
What this means
Cloud networks are more efficient and reliable than legacy solutions and allow us to handle even more data. It’ll improve reliability and resilience and help us introduce new features quicker for our customers.
- 3. Outstanding data centre architecture
We’re rolling out a distributed network of local core edge data centres around the UK, bringing the network core closer to our customers. Wherever you are. This provides lower latency and allows us to store some content locally, both of which means you get a quicker service. These are going live as we turn on 5G later in the year.
The technical bit
Our data centres host our network, which processes our network data. We’ve recently upgraded our data centres to be next generation. Legacy data centres can be out of date, inefficient and unable to support the huge scalability required for best in class 5G. So, our new 5G core network will run from these next generation data centres.
- 4. Next generation Radio Access Network technology
Introducing, our brand new Radio Access Network (RAN). We’re deploying the most advanced next-level RAN technology for 5G. Our new RAN will replace the existing one, which will give speed, capacity, coverage and performance improvements for the future.
The technical bit
RAN technology is the masts and base station equipment, and the connectivity, that links mobile traffic to our core network. We’re using mMIMO, 64T64R RAN technology with an evolved backhaul solution, that moves our transport network closer to you.
- What we mean by 'real 5G'
We’re really passionate about delivering a real 5G experience for our customers. How we’ll deliver our 5G network is highly technical and complex. It’s what sets our offering apart, but when you get down to the nitty gritty it can get pretty dry. So, we’ve made it our business to explain this for customers in a visual and assessible way. Visit www.three.co.uk/real5g to find out more about our 5G magic.
- And there’s more
We’re delivering a next generation customer and billing support solution, which means our entire IT support will be sitting in the Cloud. This will enable us to give you the best customer service, from billing and care to network support and new products. We’ll be rolling it out throughout 2019 and 2020.