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EE's 4G mobile broadband service appears to be living up to the download speed promises made ahead of launch.

A study conducted by RootMetrics - which carried out 95,672 separate tests across Liverpool, Cardiff and Sheffield - revealed that speeds of between 8Mb and 12Mb are commonly available to consumers and businesses.

The firm reported average speeds of 11.8Mb in Cardiff, 9.4Mb in Liverpool and 7.9Mb in Sheffield - roughly in line with initial projections.

As such, dongle and tablet broadband users in the city are able to access faster speeds than previously available using 3G networks.

Bill Moore, RootMetrics' President and Chief Executive Officer, said EE's 4G network "has lived up to its own promises".

"Speeds are meeting EE’s pledges and indoor performance is reasonably good," he stated.

"At the same time, the technology is more powerful than the bar that has been set, and there should be room for further improvement."

EE launched 4G mobile broadband services in the 1,800MHz spectrum band at the end of October 2011, initially in 11 cities around the UK.

The firm hopes to increase network coverage from the current 45 per cent of the population to 98 per cent by 2014.

UK consumers should soon be able to access 4G mobile broadband from alternative providers, not merely EE.

Ofcom is in the process of auctioning off spectrum in the 800MHz and 2.6GHz frequency bands, in a process which should be completed by the second quarter of the year.

A total of seven companies are competing for spectrum which would allow them to launch 4G services, including Vodafone, Three, T-Mobile and Orange.

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