European 4G rollouts to start by 2013

The European Commission has said that it expects EU member states to begin providing the wireless spectrum required to support 4G connectivity services by 2013.

The target was revealed in a memo circulated on Thursday, prior to a meeting between European telecoms ministers being held today.

"The commission is convinced that its proposal to fix 2013 as the target date is necessary and realistic," wrote Neelie Kroes, European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda. "[We] will encourage those member states that have had difficulties in making progress so far and are working hard to overcome those difficulties to meet this deadline." For some member states, this target may be pushed back to 2015, it added.

When available, 4G networks will reportedly offer significantly faster and more reliable mobile Internet services than the current standard, 3G.

Yota, a Moscow-based start-up, claimed to have one of the world’s first commercial 4G services when it launched in 2009. Yota offers mobile Internet download speeds of up to 100Mb. Its coverage currently serves several major Russian cities, as well as part of Central and South America.

Peter Done

Peter Done is managing director of Peninsula Business Services, the personnel and employment law consultancy he set up having already built a successful betting shop business.

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