O2 UK DC-HSPA rollout is faster 3G not 4G

Mobile users in the UK continue to wait for a 4G network to be rolled out across the country, and some users in more rural regions have trouble even getting a viable 3G signal, but today we have news of the O2 UK DC-HSPA rollout that is a faster 3G connection but not as fast as 4G.

UK mobile carrier O2 has announced that it is rolling out the faster version of 3G, but as Cnet are reporting it won’t be a speed hike that 4G will eventually provide as it’s an incremental improvement, while mobile operators wait for the 4G spectrum auctions to finally get underway.

The rollout could see mobile data download speeds doubling with DC-HSPA, which stands for dual-cell high speed packet access. The version of this that the carrier is rolling out has a theoretical maximum of 42Mbps, which is double that of the more widely used HSPA+ version of 3G. Although it has to be remembered that the actual speeds achieved in the real world could be lower.

An O2 spokesman confirmed the service would be rolled out to “major UK cities”, but wouldn’t state which ones would be getting it first though the likes of London and Manchester are likely areas. Apple added support for DC-HSPA with the UK version of the latest iPad, and Nokia has also added support to its European version of the Lumia 900. For users to take advantage of the tech will have to be using the part of O2’s network that offers support for DC-HSPA, so any speed increases are dependent on where the device is being used.

Rival UK networks are also planning on using DC-HSPA as Three plans to rollout the service this summer, while Everything Everywhere is planning a DC-HSPA rollout during the fourth quarter of 2012. Vodafone has already begun pushing out DC-HSPA to major UK cities a year ago with the operation ongoing, but they use a version that only offers a maximum of 28.8Mbps.

This news comes after the carrier last week announced its new O2 Travel pricing plan, which allows users to pay a set amount for their data charges when travelling through Europe. Do you want faster data downloads?

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