Everything Everywhere has announced that it has begun a 4G pilot project in the north of England designed to highlight the potential for high-speed mobile services to bring internet access to those in remote areas.
The trial is running in Threlkeld, in Cumbria in the Lake District, and will incorporate up to 50 local residents and run until the end of July as part of work by the firm to test its network's performance running 4G services.
Rory Stewart, the MP for Penrith and the Borders, in which the trial location sits, welcomed the trial in the area, claiming it would help solve several issues hampering those in the remote region.
"I'm so proud of what Cumbrians have done to make this possible, deeply grateful that the Cabinet is so focused on Cumbria, and that national companies like Everything Everywhere are choosing Cumbria as the location for their technology pilots," he said.
"Many of the problems we face with our businesses, health, and council services are problems of distance. The latest technology allows us to jump those barriers and prove that rural areas can be national vanguards."
Stewart has been a vocal campaigner for mobile operators to have their 4G coverage obligations widened to 98 per cent of the UK, an argument Ofcom agreed with when increasing this obligation earlier this year.
Education secretary Michael Gove also attended the event to see how the technology could improve distance learning in the area by allowing children to take part in online activities that form part of their curriculum, which had previously proved impossible.
Everything Everywhere is hoping to be given the right from Ofcom to use its existing 1800MHz spectrum for 4G services ahead of the auctions set to take place later this year, and the announcement of the trial comes after a marketing push earlier this week to tout the financial importance of 4G to the UK.
The trial follows on from a similar project in Cornwall being run by the firm in conjunction with BT, while rival operator O2 has recently touted the success of its trial 4G network in central London.
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