EE, the UK’s largest mobile network operator, announced that the company is committing to connect more than 1,500 rural communities within three years by investing in a unique micro network technology that provides coverage to remote areas without fixed broadband infrastructure. According to EE, starting in early 2015, it will be making voice services, as well as 3G and 4G mobile data coverage available in communities that currently don’t have reliable mobile or high speed broadband.
EE said that it will build new micro networks that wirelessly connect small mobile antennas to a suitable nearby macro site, without the need for cabling, dramatically improving the economics of connecting hard to reach areas. The first community to be connected through trials of the new micro network technology is the small village of Sebergham, in Cumbria. Sebergham has 129 dwellings and 347 residents, and sits in a deep valley, added EE. The solution that is based on micro network technology designed by Paralle Wireless can connect communities of around 100-150 homes and businesses, across an area of 0.5 square miles with just three or four small antennas, enabling lower cost of deployment.