Vodafone has become the latest network operator to enter the 4G fray, after announcing plans to launch a network delivering speeds "typically six times as fast as 3G" at the end of the month.
The carrier will offer a next-gen mobile internet service dubbed Red 4G in London from August 29th, with plans to rollout the service to 12 more cities by the end of the year.
These are Birmingham, Bradford, Coventry, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield.
Vodafone has also pledged to offer 4G indoor coverage to 98 per cent of the country by 2015.
Plans, which are available in store from August 12th, start at £26 per month for a SIM only contract. That’s exactly in line with O2’s cheapest SIM only 4G contract and £5 per month more than EE’s.
4G phone and contract bundles, meanwhile, start at £34 per month over 24 months or £52 per month for one-year contracts.
Along with a monthly text, calls and 4G data allowance, all Vodafone Red 4G customers will also be entitled to either Sky Sports Mobile TV or Spotify Premium.
They’ll also be granted three-months unlimited data when they sign their contract, under Vodafone's TestDrive scheme.
Ernest Doku, telecoms expert at uSwitch.com, said: “Vodafone has added some fuel to the 4G fire with its new plans.
“As competition finally looks set to heat up, Vodafone has thrown down the gauntlet with deals that offer not only faster data speeds, but more mobile data and - most importantly - a great selection of extra benefits to really make the most of it.
He added: “The chance to let loose and enjoy unlimited data for the first three months with their Test Drive allows consumers to experience 4G without any fear of bill shock, which is great news considering almost seven in 10 uSwitch consumers were worried that 4G will see them racing towards their data limits at an alarming pace.
“And while Vodafone has mirrored EE’s £5 monthly premium, it has managed to provide clear and tangible benefits to making the leap to 4G by offering access to Sky Sports and Spotify, two brilliant ways to truly demonstrate the value of great speeds on the move."
Vodafone has pledged to invest £900 million in its network in 2013.