The 5G network has officially been launched in the United Kingdom (UK), and although you might be keen to take advantage of the rapid new internet connection, it has not yet been launched across all networks, devices and locations just yet.
EE has launched the UK's first 5G network in six cities, namely: Belfast, Birmingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh, London and Manchester.
If you are on any network other than EE, you will have to be patient and wait a while longer to access the 5G network. Access to the 5G network also requires a device which is 5G capable (i.e. the handset itself and a 5G contract), and you also need to live in one of the six cities mentioned above that now have 5G access.
Your current options for a 5G device are as follows: the LG V50 ThinQ 5G, the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G, the Oppo Reno 5G and the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G. The Oppo Reno 5G is the cheapest option, at a cost of £449. The OnePlus 7 Pro 5G is the middle of the range option, starting from £629. The most expensive device is the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, which we predict will probably cost upwards of £1,000 in the UK. It remains to be seen if EE will also stock the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G (which will cost £799 in the UK) as well, given the ongoing Android restrictions on Huawei which has put their plans on pause.
At the moment, 5G is not available to everyone across all networks. EE is currently the only 5G network in the UK, however Vodafone is next, as they are set to launch their 5G network on the 3rd of July.
Vodafone is set to launch in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, London and Manchester. Later in the year, they also plan to extend their 5G network to an array of other UK locations: Birkenhead, Blackpool, Bournemouth, Guildford, Newbury, Portsmouth, Plymouth, Reading, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Warrington and Wolverhampton. Vodafone have confirmed that they will be able to provide 5G to two devices, namely the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G and the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G.
O2 is also set to launch their 5G networks at some point this year. We do not yet know when this will be, however we do know that Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London are lined up to be the first UK cities that will be able to access the network. At the moment, the only device which is confirmed to offer 5G on an O2 network is the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G. Like EE, O2 announced that they would be stocking the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G, however again, we do not yet know if this will still be the case given the current situation regarding the Android restrictions on Huawei.
Three have also confirmed that they will launch their 5G network at some point in 2019, however the only UK city that it has confirmed as being able to access to Three's 5G network is London. Three announced that it would be stocking the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G as well as the other network providers, but they are currently reconsidering it given the long-term implications of the Android restrictions on Huawei.
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