A deal has been established allowing 30 million combined UK customers on both networks to initially share 2G signals, seamlessly switching between networks if a primary signal cannot be found.
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Both sets of customers will need to sign up to a free “roaming” service which is likely to be effective from October 5th onwards. The service will act in a similar way to when you use your mobile phone abroad, choosing networks automatically, sometimes changing to a stronger network mid-call.
Everything Everywhere, the company that will control both T-Mobile and Orange operations, intend on rolling out 3G services to its customers, when this goes live Orange customers will be able to take advantage of a 3G network owned by Mobile Broadband Network limited, a company owned by both Three and T-Mobile. Orange customers are already able to take advantage of the Orange network for their 2G calls.
In the future, Everything Everywhere will look to build a LTE mobile network, a network that will offer significant data speed improvements, as soon as the government hold the auction for the mobile spectrum in 2011.