Industry analysts have been quick to praise EE for bringing the first 4G LTE network to the UK, saying the mobile operator has done so with perfect timing. However, warnings have also been made that the firm needs to avoid raising customer expectations and then failing to deliver.
Launched earlier today at an event in London, EE's 4G network will bring superfast LTE speeds to 16 cities in time for Christmas and to 98 percent of the UK populace by 2014. What's more, the operator has announced a stellar line-up of LTE handsets, including the HTC One XL, Samsung Galaxy S3 and Nokia Lumia 920.
Mark Newman, chief research officer at Informa said EE has picked a good time to launch its LTE services, as it will help the firm to compete with its big name rivals.
"It's a good time to be launching a new mobile brand in the UK. EE will, to all intents and purposes, be a new network but crucially, one which has excellent coverage to compete with the existing players," he said.
"This is what has made it difficult for new operators like [Three] in the past."
However, Newman warned that the network will have to make sure that it does not let customers down with its promises of superfast speeds and quick rollout plans.
"EE will have to be careful about over-promising on 4G capabilities particularly given that the network will only cover 30 percent of the population by the end of this year," he explained.
"It will need to strike a balance between extolling the virtues of 4G in terms of speed and latency while, at the same time, continuing to invest in, and market its 3G network capability."
Ovum analyst Matthew Howett also praised EE on the launch, but agreed with Newham in that its services must live up to customers' expectations.
"For it to be an attractive proposition for consumers, it requires a good degree of network coverage, an attractive range of handsets and easy-to-understand pricing. From what we learnt today, EE certainly seems to have done everything right on the first two, but pricing will not be known until the firm launches in a few weeks' time," Howett said.
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