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London to gain 5G mobile network by 2020

London will boast a 5G mobile network by 2020, offering smartphone owners the ability to download a film to their handsets in under a second.

According to London Mayor Boris Johnson, the nation’s capital will benefit from one of the world’s first major 5G mobile networks in just six years’ time, as the city looks to mark itself out as a pioneer of new internet infrastructure.

“London is earning a reputation for being the tech capital of Europe and that is why we need to ensure every Londoner is able to access the very best digital connectivity,” Johnson stated.

He added: “Rapidly improving the connectivity of this great city is a key part of the Infrastructure Plan for London.”

It is believed that Johnson will outline detailed plans for the 5G push later this week in collaboration with the University of Surrey.

Although much of the UK is still without 4G speeds, the move to a 5G network in London is planned to coincide with wider internet infrastructure improvements. The mayor’s report is set to outline areas of London most in need of connectivity improvements, be they through new technologies or simple, traditional broadband improvements.

At present 4G networks are still very much in their infancy in the UK. Although EE has been a driving force on the scene, widespread 4G coverage has only started filtering out in the past 12 months, with coverage still patchy.

Last year, Huawei announced it was working on a 5G network for rollout in 2020. The Chinese manufacturer and connectivity giant claimed that the network would offer “100 times the speed of the fastest 4G mobile connections deployed today.”

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