Everything Everywhere (EE) CEO Olaf Swantee believes the deployment of LTE and mobile commerce services will benefit the UK digital economy.
Swantee said that he was pushing the UK telecoms regulator Ofcom to accelerate the timetable for the much-delayed LTE spectrum auction. The EE chief illustrated the need for LTE by claiming that the EE network had recorded a 250 per cent increase in demand for mobile data services over the past four months.
"4G will play a central role for building our economy in the UK, it will help underpin the economic development here," he said at the Guardian Mobile Business Summit, according to New Media Age. "We are encouraging the Government to get this fixed as fast as possible."
He also noted: "There are 200,000 to 300,000 ‘not spots' [areas lacking Internet connectivity] in the UK, with LTE we could probably get this fixed."
Commenting on the m-commerce joint venture EE has formed with Vodafone and O2 in the UK, Swantee accepted that similar operator ventures elsewhere had failed to succeed due to the high charges demanded from third parties, such as advertisers. While dismissing this would happen in the UK, he said that the decision to join with Vodafone and O2 was to create scale "and to bring our customer base[s] and our assets into that space to make sure that it starts to accelerate."
While the m-commerce joint venture has yet to submit its proposal to the European Commission regulators, Orange has been running its service in the UK since May. However, Swantee admitted that the service was only available on two of its handsets, but claimed that Orange had "seen a big uptake but from a small base."
- see this New Media Age article
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