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BT’s 5G network will launch this autumn

We don’t know exactly when, but BT has confirmed that its 5G network is coming later this year

BT will launch its 5G service in the UK this autumn. The telecoms giant has announced that it hopes to have cemented coverage in 16 cities by the end of 2019, although it has so far been unwilling to share exactly when we can expect the switch to be flipped.

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BT Plus customers will be happy to hear that they will be first in line for an upgrade to a 5G handset. Incidentally, this makes BT the first company to offer 5G as a part of a dual mobile network/broadband package. The firm’s 5G services will then be available for all BT customers, both residential and business.

It’s still unclear at this time just how many UK cities will benefit from BT 5G when it launches. Given that BT owns EE and operates using the same infrastructure, however, we can make a few safe assumptions. The 16 cities in question, for example, are likely to be the same: Cardiff, Belfast, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Manchester, Bristol, Coventry, Glasgow, Hull, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and London.

EE also has plans to expand its 5G service to Aberdeen, Cambridge, Derby, Gloucester, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Southampton, Worcester and Wolverhampton in 2020 – we can assume that BT’s own 5G network won’t be far behind.

BT has yet to share most of the finer details, including how much its 5G contracts will cost and which handsets it will stock. EE’s own 5G contracts start at £54/mth, and so far apply to the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, OnePlus 7 Pro 5G, Oppo Reno 5G and LG V50 ThinQ 5G.

Again, we can do little more than speculate at this point, but there’s every chance that BT will offer a similar selection, and it’s likely that prices will sit at a similarly uncomfortable height.

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