UK Broadband today unveiled a 4G home and mobile broadband service for Londoners, in a move it claims will be “transformational” for the UK broadband market and liberate consumers from onerous, unwanted landline rental charges.
Touted as a viable alternative to ADSL and fibre fixed line broadband, UK Broadband’s Relish 4G home broadband product offers average download speeds of 13Mbps in central London and a headline speed of 65Mbps. However, in a test we ran at the launch in Southwark, it topped out at an impressive 40Mbps.
Priced £20 per month on a 30-day or 12-month contract, the home broadband product’s other major ‘sells’ are the lack of a landline charge or installation fee, transparent pricing and no usage restrictions. It’s also billed as a ‘plug-and-play’, self-install service.
A 4G router is free on 12-month contract options, but a £50 fee applies on the minimum 30-day contract.
Relish's mobile broadband proposition, which uses the same 4G technology and offers the same average speed of 13Mbps, starts at £10 per month. That gets you 1GB of time-limited data usage.
A mobile wireless device dubbed the 'Pocket Hub', or Mi-Fi if you’re in the business of using Three’s registered brand name, is included with Relish mobile broadband and provides a localised wireless 4G signal that can be shared by up to ten 4G-capable devices simultaneously.
Relish home broadband customers who add mobile broadband to their package qualify for a £5 per month discount.
The home broadband 4G service is solely available within central London. That’s an area defined as within the perimeters of Old Street, Kensington, Canary Wharf and Southwark.
Mobile broadband customers get the 4G service in this area of London too and are transferred to Three’s 3G network when they move beyond its boundaries.
Both home and mobile products are aimed at consumers and business users, specifically small-to-medium enterprises with 20 employees or fewer.
Nicholas James, CEO UK Broadband, said: “Central London is home to some of the world’s most talented and busy people, who have to suffer long delays in getting their broadband service set up and pay a ‘landline tax’ for a service they often don’t need.
“Relish wants to give Londoners the broadband they deserve – and will shake up the market with a fair and transparent service that meets the digital demands of modern Londoners.”
The launch of Relish’s landline-rental-free offering comes in the wake of a study by the Centre of Economics and Business which found that over a third of Londoners say they rarely use their home landline for voice calls.
The survey, which posits that unnecessary and unwanted landline charges cost Londoners £193million per year, also revealed that 62% of businesses are confident they could function well without a landline.